I Just Wanna Skate
A couple of my kids have been pestering me to take them ice skating. They seemed shocked when I told them I know how to skate - pretty well, actually - and that I used to do it all the time with my brothers when we were little kids, on a frozen "pond" (more like a backwater swamp) in Iowa. We would make homemade hockey sticks out of lumber and just have a blast.
Since we live in Laurel, the topic came up if we can skate on the Laurel Pond on the west side of town. My wife said, "That's ridiculous, no one skates on Laurel Pond! Have you seen anyone out there?" I was like, "Yeah, all the time." Not entirely true. In fact, I don't think I've ever really noticed anyone skating on the pond, but I don't see why not. It's not like it's illegal. I went out there to check it out a week or so ago and the ice was thick and almost perfectly smooth. Awesome for skating.
I reminded the kids that none of us have ice skates. And they're around $30 - $100 for a new pair. I called a few places in Billings that I thought might rent them, and it appears that no one does, except for Centennial Ice Arena and you have to use them there. They won't let me take them to the pond, ha.
It's probably going to be too warm to venture out on the ice this weekend, with highs near 50, but come next week it should be great skating weather. Maybe I'll swing by Play It Again Sports and grab some used skates for the fam and head out. Just make sure the ice is safe (like 4" or more) before you start screwing around on it. I don't want to hear about you on the news, falling through the ice.