Ask Benny

Is the Penn Ice Rink at the Class of 1923 Arena open to the public?

Dear Benny,
While walking down Walnut Street, I’ve often noticed the ice rink situated on the southern side near 32nd Street. I was wondering—is the rink available for public use? With the holidays nearing, I’m getting in the mood to bundle up and skate a few laps.
—An Aspiring Michelle Kwan

Dear Michelle,
The Penn Ice Rink at the Class of 1923 Arena, at 3130 Walnut St., is a hidden gem of the University, and yes, it is open to the public.

From the beginning of September until the end of March, the 2,500-seat arena hosts home games for Penn’s men’s and women’s ice hockey clubs, and also offers a variety of weekly activities, including public skating, open hockey, and figure skating. Skating lessons and the opportunity to rent the rink for private parties or games are also available for skaters of all ages.

As the weather gets cooler, the rink offers a handful of special skating sessions, including a Thanksgiving Skate on Saturday, Nov. 29, from 5:30 to 7 p.m., free with a non-perishable food donation in support of local nonprofit Philabundance; and two Holiday Skates on Sunday, Dec. 14, and Sunday, Dec. 21, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. The Holiday Skates are free with the donation of a new toy in support of the Toys for Tots campaign.

Over the summer, the Ice Rink made significant enhancements to the facility as part of its preparations for the 2014-2015 ice season. Highlights included renovated men’s and
women’s locker rooms, lighting upgrades, and the installation of a new dehumidification system, which reduces the facility’s energy costs. Skaters can also enjoy the new inventory of rentable figure skates and hockey skates, and improved ice quality thanks to the recent addition of a second Olympia Resurfacer.

For more information about special events occurring at the Penn Ice Rink in the coming weeks and throughout the season, visit www.upenn.edu/icerink.