AVON — There’s an exciting new addition to the ice skating rink at the Washington Township Park in Avon this holiday season.
Ice bumper cars are available for all ages from now until Jan. 7. The cars are an exclusive to the rink and one of the few in the nation on a synthetic ice rink.
“Someone tagged us in a Facebook post last year, (the ice bumper cars) were being used at a rink in Rhode Island,” Cassi Still, co-owner of Premier Entertainment Group, explained. “We tracked down the manufacturer out of Colorado and he shipped us a car because he had never sold the cars to people with synthetic ice. We are the first synthetic rink in the United States to own ice bumper cars.”
Premier Entertainment Group is co-owned by Still and Tom Weber of Avon who were married and now divorced. They started Premier three years ago after they both moved to Central Indiana from Chicago post divorce. They rent inflatables during the summer, but added the rink last year. Being synthetic, the rink can be set up anywhere and anytime, even in the summer.
“It’s like a cutting board,” Tom Weber said of the surface branded as Easy Glide 360. “We treat it with, basically for lack of better terms, a hand soap and water mixture which allows us to leave behind a finish that is comparable to Pam cooking spray on a baking sheet.”
Depending on the number of skaters, the surface needs to be treated or reactivated every few hours with water. The rink is about 1,200 square feet, but Weber says he eventually would like to expand it to twice that size. He also hopes to expand the programming to offering hockey and skating lessons.
The cars resemble an inner tube powered by a motor that can go up to seven miles per hour. Children as young as 5 and at least 36 inches tall can ride by themselves. Younger children can ride with an adult. The controls are like two joysticks on either side of the rider which control the spinning. Three wheels underneath are equipped with studs for traction. The cars also have lights for night operations.
Premier has special events ahead including an evening with PJ Mask and Paw Patrol for the children. There are also adult events for the 21 and older crowd where alcohol is available. The special events sell out quickly, but a few tickets are still available, Still said.
The rink also offers skating at scheduled times. The surface works with hockey or figure skates. You can bring your own or rent from Premier. There is also a food truck usually available and when you are not riding, you can warm up around the fires around the rink.
During open rink time, sessions are one hour for skating or the bumper cars. The cost is $10 per person.
“The cars are a little bit of an investment,” Weber admits. “I said I could do a vacation home or an ice rink out here at the park and I chose the ice rink.”
The rink is open from 5 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays, but check the online schedule for special events or corporate parties that may close the rink. The rink is in the Washington Township Park on the upper level basketball court. The park address is 115 S. C.R. 575 E., Avon, which is just off of U.S. 36 between Avon and Danville.
For more information, a schedule of events or to purchase tickets online, visit the website at avonicerink.com.