Monday, September 5, 2011


This post is about skating in Central Park in New York City.  Despite the fact that Central Park has ice rinks in the wintertime, I am not actually talking about ice skating; yes, I know that this blog is called Backyard Ice.  However, the tagline of this blog is "the roofless world of skating outdoors" and I will comfortably place this article under the "skating outdoors" category!

I was in Central Park for the first time last year, when I was a chaperone for my oldest daughter Rebecca's high school trip to NYC.  My first reaction upon seeing the nice paved paths all over the place was, "man, I wish I had my inline skates."  So, when I was told by the powers that be around here that our family vacation this summer was going to be a trip to Manhattan, I said "fine, as long as I can go for a skate in Central Park."  So, I packed an extra bag with skates and helmets for my son Joey and myself.

Our hotel was on 8th Avenue, just a few blocks south of Central Park.  So, early on our last full day in NYC Joey and I headed out towards Columbus Circle, along with Backyard Ice's top photographer, Susie.  It was fairly early in the morning, and already the temperature was about 28°C with the heat index pushing 40°C.  (Check out this web page; it's a look at the weather on the actual day we went skating.)  Yeah, we managed to visit New York in the middle of a huge heat wave; in fact, on the very next day the temperature of 40°C set a new NYC record - the heat index was up somewhere above 46°C.  That was the day we left New York, and boy did our van's air conditioning get a workout all the way to Maine!

Unfortunately, Joey and I didn't have a whole lot of time to explore the park that morning...we were all going to an early Mets game, and we wanted to give ourselves lots of time to figure out how to get there on the subway.  (Sarcastic side note: it was just a bit hot underground at the subway station, and at the ballpark too!)  Also, even though we only went for a short skate, I was in desperate need of another shower.  Well, actually, I needed "another shower" almost as soon we stepped outside our hotel every day that we were there...

Here are a couple of action pictures I took of Joey wheeling through the park: 
Central Park is an amazing place.  You really can forget that you are smack dab in the middle of one of the world's biggest cities...until you peek up over the tall trees and see the huge buildings all around the outside of the park.  Oh, and on a day like July 21, 2011, a couple of Canadians who are used to considerably cooler summertime weather are pretty happy to find out that Central Park also has lots of water fountains...

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