2/7/17: The Skate Pond at West Park is closed for the season.
Although we may have cold ambient temperatures returning in the future, the ice always begins to thaw significantly around this time each year due to fluctuating temperatures. Longer daylight hours and the sun’s trajectory also adversely affect the ice conditions and can pose a safety risk to users.
A standard rule of thumb often used is to begin monitoring the condition of the grass that has been under ice cover for 40 days, and begin removal work after 60 days. The sooner we can close the ice and drain the pond it helps to start the restoration process to the turf for the spring and summer activities. It is also important to monitor the grasses surface for standing water after ice begins to melt.
Due to the above mentioned factors, we hope you understand why we have determined it was time to close the West Park skating pond for the season.
Outdoor Ice Skating
The City of Lake Forest maintains outdoor skating facilities at West Park with a warming house with bathrooms and ice rink guards. West Park also has lights for night skating and hockey boards.
Please do not skate on the ice when "NO SKATING” sign are posted as the ice becomes more dangerous as a result of the skating. Guards are on duty, when the ice is safe to skate on, during the following hours:
Monday - Thursday 3:30-9:00 p.m.
Friday 3:30-10:00 p.m.
Saturday 10:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.
Sunday 12:00-9:00 p.m.
For information regarding ice conditions please call:
ICE RINK INFORMATION LINE: 847-234-6702 ext. 5
Skate Pond Information
There are many factors that go into the decision if the ice is open for skating. Just because it’s cold outside, doesn't necessarily mean the ice is ready. For the ice to be ready, we need the temperatures to be in the teens or low twenties at night for several consecutive nights, without snow.
Rain, snow and vandalism to the ice can delay the ice from freezing even when weather conditions are perfect. Damage is caused by walking through thin ice or by debris being thrown onto the freezing ice. It takes a great deal of labor to remove footprints and debris from the ice and thus prevents the ice from having a smooth and safe surface for your enjoyment.
Snow creates problems as well: snow insulates the ice from cold night time temperatures and slows the freezing rate. Our parks department is responsible for snow removal at all of our facilities including the parking lots and all walkways. It will not be until it stops snowing that the skate pond is addressed. Once the snow stops and all other facilities are cleared, snow removal at the skate pond will begin.
A sign is placed outside the rink indicating the status of the rink. If the sign indicates that the rink is closed, please stay off the ice so we can avoid any delays in getting the skate pond opened.
You can always check the status of the skate pond by visiting our website at lfparksandrec.com or calling the program information hotline at 847-234-6702 press 5.