Today I took Annabelle, Ethan and my niece Hannah out to The Rink which is on the outskirts of Portadown.
I first took Annabelle to this place last winter because she wanted to go skating but I didn’t really want to take her all the way to Dundonald to go ice-skating. However, although it is closer for me to travel to, if you have never been before, I will warn you that it is a little out in the sticks and if like today the main road is closed, you do have to drive down narrow country roads to get there.
Opening hours are a little longer this week for Halloween break and so we headed over straight after lunch. Annabelle brought her own skates and we hired skates for Hannah as she doesn’t own any. They seem to have got new skates in recently and they looked super cute! The total cost was £8 and for that the girls could spend as long as they liked skating.
Sadly I was unable to skate with them today as I had Ethan in the sling but I spent over 2 hours dancing and singing along to the playlist (which was pretty great) while the girls skated around. The staff were lovely and even offered to let me sit in the party room with the heater on if I felt Ethan was getting cold. He was actually pretty toasty warm in the sling so we just stayed in the normal seating area but it was still nice of them to offer.
They have a small tuc shop on site for the kids to get snacks, fizzy drinks and hot drinks. Today the girls both had hot chocolates to keep the chill away when they sat down for a break. Most drinks cost £1 and although the range isn’t massive there are always several options to pick from.
Today was the first time I realised that The Rink is actually a charity. The Rink is a not for profit social enterprise setup by Love Hockey Ireland to provide a setting for their charitable objectives and to provide a revenue for the charities sustainability. A member of staff was telling me that when Annabelle outgrows her skates, if she wants to donate them to The Rink rather than a charity shop, they will give her a free skate pass which is definitely worth thinking about when the time comes.
Even as we left today I was being asked when we cold go back, they never seem to tire of this place. Opening times regularly change over holiday periods so remember to check their website before visiting – The Rink
Annabelle & Hannah gave The Rink 4.5/5