Reporting Ross Guidotti
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — There are plenty of winter-themed activities going on around Pittsburgh this weekend, including the opening of the “Penguins Pond” on the South Side.
The Penguins’ outdoor rink opened to skaters Friday evening, but an official grand opening ceremony was held Saturday morning at 11 a.m.
The rink is located at the intersection of 26th and Sidney Streets in the South Side Works complex, and will operate daily through Jan. 8.
KDKA’s Ross Guidotti reports:
Last year’s outdoor rink was built on the North Shore as part of the Winter Classic.
It was so popular, the Penguins, Highmark, the Urban Redevelopment Authority, rink operator Magic Ice USA and the Soffer Organization decided to do it again this holiday season – this time on Pittsburgh’s South Side.
The boards and glass are part of Penguins’ history; they are from the old Civic Arena.
No. 19, he’s part of hockey history, too. Former Penguin, hockey Hall of Famer and seven-time Stanley Cup champion Bryan Trottier hit the sheet Saturday afternoon as well. It was a far cry from his first backyard rink in western Canada.
“We didn’t have like these really cool boards and the glass,” said Trottier. “We had chicken wire around our little rink and the boards were made out of, I think, one by four – it might have been pine or something. We were constantly fixing it.”
Joining Trottier at the grand opening were Pens’ mascot Iceburgh, the Penguins’ Ice Crew and Penguins’ fans of all ages.
Public skating will be available at the rink every day, and Trottier recommends trying it out.
“It’s a sense of freedom,” he said of skating outdoors. “I’m 8-years-old all over again. This is really kind of a fun day for me.”