By Brad Lane
While the winter cold may bring shivers to some, for those that enjoy ice skating, the dropping temperatures are always a welcomed sign. For those figure skaters and hockey players in Iowa, there are plenty of ice rinks to choose from. Whether you want to participate in some recreational hockey leagues, practice your figure skating skills, or simply show up and enjoy some public skating, you can find all of that and more at any one of these 10 best ice skating rinks in Iowa.
Backdropped by a beautiful city skyline, the Brenton Skating Plaza is an outdoor skating rink in the heart of downtown Des Moines. Offering rentals and opportunities to skate at night, Brenton Skating Plaza also offers events throughout the season ranging from broomball games to outdoor concerts. For those looking to pop the question to their significant other, Brenton Skating Plaza also offers a special “Promotion” package which includes private skate time for two.
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Situated in the Coral Ridge Mall, next to a 10-screen movie theater, the Coral Ridge Ice Arena hosts ice activity throughout the year. Whether it’s public skating, hockey leagues, or ice-skating lessons, there’s always something cool to do. Public skate can be found on the ice every day at Coral Ridge Ice Arena, and with the additional movie theater and dining options under the same roof, any visit can make for a full afternoon or evening.
The Raccoon River Park Ice Rink in West Des Moines has been open to the public since 2016, and since its inception it has proven to be a fun spot to beat the winter blues. Outdoors and pristine, patrons to the Raccoon River Park Ice Rink need to bring their own ice skates, and public admission is always free. Hockey, broomball, and other ice activities are always welcomed, as long as there's enough ice to share for everyone to enjoy.
Home to the American Hockey League team the Iowa Wild, the Metro Ice Sports Facility hosts year-round ice rink activity. Besides watching the prowess of the Iowa Wild in their home habitat, patrons to the Metro Ice Sports Facility can enjoy figure skating lessons, recreation hockey leagues, and public skate. With two full-size ice rinks within the facility, the Metro Ice Sports Facility provides unique ice time every day of the week.
Operating under the city of Waterloo, the Young Arena is home to the American Hockey League’s Waterloo Blackhawks, and besides hosting national champions, this open-to-the-public ice rink also hosts plenty of personal skating time. Public skate, adult hockey leagues, and Learn-to-Skate clinics—there are a lot of options for entertainment at the Young Arena. For those looking for the aesthetics of an ice rink, but not the slick surfaces, public walking is available on the upper concourse of the arena.
Home to the junior hockey team, the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders, the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena welcomes the public nearly every day of the week to enjoy the ice. The Cedar Rapids Ice Arena’s schedule is packed to the brim with public skates, adult hockey leagues, how to skate clinics, figure skating practice time, and even Cheap Skate Mondays. Operating throughout the year and every season, Cedar Rapids Ice Arena is always a great way to keep cool.
When the weather cooperates just right in Clear Lake, the Marian Park Ice Skating Rink is a popular place to be. Completely free and open to skate anytime the conditions are right, the Marian Park Ice Skating Rink also features a warming house open in the evenings. Monday nights are high school-only nights, and the rest of the week is open to all ages.
Completely free of charge and only open for public skate, the Frozen Landing Family Ice Park of Bettendorf is a great way to get your blood flowing on a cold winter day. Ice skate rentals are available for $2 a day, and while hockey skates are fine to use on the ice, no sticks or pucks are allowed. With open hours every day of the week, there’s little limit to the amount of fun to be had the Frozen Landing Family Ice Park.
Featuring Learn-to-Skate clinics, figure skating practice hours, skate rentals, and recreational hockey leagues, the Mystique Community Ice Center always has something to keep you exercising and entertained. Public skate is available throughout the week, and for even more fun, the Mystique Community Ice Center also provides special camps, workshops and classes throughout the year.
The North Iowa Ice Arena has a lot going on throughout the year and season. Home to the Mason City Youth Hockey League, the North Iowa Ice Arena provides a popular intro into the sport. The North Iowa Ice Arena also provides great access to figure skating as a home rink for the North Iowa Figure Skating Club. Come each hockey season, the North Iowa Ice Arena is also home to the Tier III Junior ice hockey team, the North Iowa Bulls, who never fail to put on a good show on the ice.