Proctor rink reopens anew
By LEE J. KAHRS
PROCTOR – The Proctor Skating Rink is open for the season with a fresh new look inside and on the ice.
Rink managers Megan and Brian Cannucci received a $16,000 grant from the Mortimer Proctor Fund and the blessing of the town to upgrade and repair some key elements of the rink’s warming hut.
“We gutted the entire inside,” Megan Cannucci said, “and with the new lights on the rink, it shines like daylight out there. There were dark spots and now it’s just beautiful to see.”
The list of improvements be- gins with Jeff Patch and Patch Electric, which upgraded in- terior light and the rink lights that now shine so much more brightly.
Kitchen Encounters in Clarendon put in new countertops. Proctor carpenter Mike Knowles built new cabinets and rink benches, and Paquette Plumbing did some pipe work.
Thanks to community donations, a new kitchen sink and faucet were installed in the snack bar, and new signage with rink rules was installed.
“It’s awesome what the community did,” Cannucci said.
The rink opened for the season on Friday, Dec. 20.
There are free skate rentals, and Cannucci just asks that patrons contribute to the donation box in return.
“We use the donations to buy new skates, laces, helmets, equipment that we need,” she said.
There is also an opportunity for Proctor students to accrue required volunteer hours by working behind the rental counter at the rink.
“It’s something fun and they get their volunteer hours,” she said.
But anyone can volunteer, Cannucci said, adults as well.
The reopening is just the beginning for the rink, as Cannucci and her husband plan to make it a year-round recreation destination.
That transition has already be- gun in earnest. Last spring, they opened the hut to sell concessions for the Little League baseball games at the neighboring ball eld next to Proctor Junior/ Senior High School. They’ve
also held dances, a Halloween party, and put a donated 15-foot projection screen to good use by showing outdoor movies over the summer.
“In March, we went to the se- lect board and said that it’s crazy the rink sits unused for nine months of the year,” Cannucci said. “It can be so much more than it was before.”
In fact, the Cannucci’s are hoping to raise funds to install a playground at the rink.
“That’s our next adventure,” she said.
Regular hours are Monday- Friday, 3:30-9 p.m., and 12-9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Hours of operation are weather- dependent, however. The rink won’t open if temperatures climb above freezing or the rink ice will be too soft, Cannucci said.
During school vacations, hours are 12-9 p.m. seven days a week, weather permitting.
To keep current on what’s happening at the rink, Cannucci urged patrons to like Proctor Skate Rink on Facebook or just call 459-2819 to find out if the rink is open on any given day.
“We thank the Proctor community for all of their support,” she said.