By Kathy L. Collins
The yearly tradition of outdoor ice skating has returned to downtown Tampa. This year’s Winter Village will include Winter Village Shops, extended dates, the Winter Village Express, movies, lighted boat parade (a free event set to take place on Saturday, December 23 at 6 p.m.) and more. The Winter Village and ice skating take place in Curtis Hixon Park which is situated along the Hillsborough River at 600 N. Ashley Dr. in downtown Tampa.
The temporary ice skating rink and Winter Village will be up through Friday, January 5, 2018. The Winter Village Shops are made up of 10 local merchants. The pop up holiday shopping experience allows shoppers to get an assortment of holiday decorations and gifts including apparel, handmade toys, jewelry and dog accessories.
New this year is the Winter Village Express. You can hop on a holiday themed streetcar in either Ybor City (at quarter past the hour) or at the Whiting Station (at quarter till the hour). Roundtrip tickets are $5. The Streetcar runs from 3:15 to 7:45 p.m. on Sunday, November 19 and 26 and December 3, 10 and 17.
You can also treat yourself to a holiday snack at the Café at Winter Village which features Kahwa Coffee, Mise Waterfront Bar and Whatever Pops.
This is a fun holiday activity for the whole family. Chrissy Nieves, a resident of Winthrop in Riverview said, “We go every year and just love it.”
Rent skates and get 90 minutes on the ice for just $13. Group rates are available and you can rent the rink for a private party by contacting Rachel Radawec at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 221-3686.
The ice skating rink will be open Monday through Thursday from 4 to 9 p.m. On Friday the hours are 4 to 10 p.m. On Saturday, come out anytime between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. and on Sunday from 12 to 9 p.m. During school breaks, the rink is open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 12 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. The rink will be open on Christmas Eve from 12 to 6 p.m. and on Christmas Day from 4 to 10 p.m. Hours vary for the Winter Village Shops.
In addition to all of this, you can enjoy outdoor movies on select Friday and Saturday nights thanks to the Tampa Theatre. Visit www.tampatheatre.org for a list of the movies and showing times.
For more information, please visit www.wintervillagetampa.com.