Fort Garry welcomes individuals, couples, or families to experience a variety of winter activities for seasoned and emerging winter enthusiasts.
Fort Garry Community Centre at 880 Oakenwald Ave., Victoria Community Centre at 80 Derek St., and Wildwood Community Centre at 271 North Dr. have skating rinks. Friends can meet for an informal game of shinny, which does not interfere with visitors who are trying skating for the first time. Sometimes two shinny games go on simultaneously on the same rink with players exhibiting their skating prowess by gracefully weaving in between others. Skilled skaters with stick in hand and halting first steps are all part of the skating symphony on ice.
The community centres have skating shacks that are open for public use. Skate shacks come equipped with restrooms, a place for changing into skates, a safe place to leave boots in a public space; some centers have snack bars. Skate shack hours are usually from 3 p.m. until 9 p.m. during the week, and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on the weekends, though skaters are welcome anytime, 24 hours per day. When skate shacks are not open, boots can be left on the rubber mats outside.
Crescent Drive Park at 781 Crescent Dr. has an ice slide and a groomed outdoor skating rink. A new shelter is under construction in Crescent Drive Park. During the winter months, if there is enough snow, Crescent Drive and Wildwood golf courses feature groomed cross-country skiing trails.
Nordic Spa Thermëa at 775 Crescent Dr. attracts thousands of visitors every year. An especially appropriate time to visit Thermëa is winter, since the open-air spa is nestled in the beautiful snowy setting near the scenic Crescent Drive golf course. Thermëa features thermal pools, eucalyptus and orange scented steam rooms, Finnish saunas, relaxation rooms where visitors can read a book or rest, while sipping flavoured tea or water. For an additional price, massages by certified massage therapists are available. An on-site restaurant offers gourmet lunches and dinners or a relaxing cup of tea or drink and snack. Thermëa is open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Reservations are recommended during holiday seasons.
Helen Lepp Friesen is a community correspondent for Fort Garry. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org