AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)– Ice skating in the south. It may have seemed like an impossible feat, but Augusta on Ice is halfway through its season after creating a winter wonderland downtown.
It all started as a dream, but one family decided to make it a reality:An outdoor ice skating rink in the heart of downtown Augusta… averaging 70 degrees most days.
The brains behind the dream, Chris Boerner, told me Augusta on Ice means one thing to her: “What I love most is just finding ways to bring people together.”
Boerner, her husband Michael and their two kids moved to the Garden City one year ago. They wanted to get involved in the community and find activities to do as a family. That is how Augusta on Ice was born, but Boerner said it is no easy task.
“It’s unbelievable how much work and time it has taken,” Boerner explained. “I would say when we started out, we didn’t expect that it would grow to this size and be this big.”
She said Augusta on Ice has been a learning process: Like how to keep ice frozen in 70 degree weather.”
“We have got a nine ton chiller that we had to take off of a semi with a crane,” Boerner said. “It’s pumping glycol underneath the ice, keeping it cold round the clock.”
She said thousands walk through the Winter Wonderland each Saturday and Sunday– The Smith family being one.
“We bring our kids out here, and it’s a special treat for them,” Ryan Smith told me. “They are already asking to come back later in the week.”
Boerner explained people enjoy ice skating and the snow slide most. “What I would love to have is a carousal. So we have a merry-go-round on the list for next year.”
“It’s just going to get bigger and better from here,” Smith concluded. “I’m excited for Augusta and the people who live here.”
If you prefer short lines, weekdays are the best time to go. This coming week, Augusta on Ice is offering an unlimited pass from 4 to 9 pm– It’s only 12 dollars.
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