Warsaw Park Board Will Consider Two Options For Ice Rink

Warsaw Parks Department Superintendent Larry Plummer, Parks Board President Steve Haines, Parks Board Vice President Larry Ladd, Board Member Bill Baldwin. InkFreeNews photo by Lasca Randels.

WARSAW  At the Warsaw Parks & Recreation board meeting Tuesday, Jan. 21, Steve Haines was elected as 2020 board president and Larry Ladd was elected as vice president. 

Parks Superintendent Larry Plummer, Haines and Ladd recently met with an architect from Valparaiso regarding potential plans for an ice rink in Warsaw.  

Plummer said it was decided that they needed to see a footprint of an ice rink and building at Bixler Park and one at Central Park as well. Last Friday, at the Board of Works meeting, the architect from Valparaiso was hired to perform those renderings in order to make a determination as to which location – if either – the park board supports.

The city is working to develop a plan after K21 Health Foundation offered $1 million toward a future ice rink. Winona Lake has also been invited to consider a plan.

Maintenance Director Shaun Gardner said volunteers from the Young Tigers program worked at the concession stand set up in the Christmas light display area at Central Park and made $1,971, which they donated back to the park to be used for future displays. 

Recreation Director Sheila Wieringa said tickets for the 2020 Daddy-Daughter Sweetheart Dance are sold out for both nights. The event will take place Friday, Feb. 7, and Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Center Lake Pavilion. According to Wieringa, it took two weeks to sell out both nights of the event this year, a total of 300 tickets.

Wieringa said there would be a change in the event this year.

“In the past, we’ve always done an appetizer-type bar,” Wieringa said. “It’s little finger sandwiches, sweets, cupcakes, cookies, things like that.”

“One of the comments I’ve heard over and over is ‘Why isn’t there food here’ or ‘We thought there would be food here,’ Wieringa told board members. “This year, with Our Father’s House, who has always done our catering since this program started, they are going to do chicken strips and macaroni and cheese.”

Wieringa said there will still be desserts and snacks available as well. The ticket cost did not go up with the addition of the meal items, Wieringa said. Ticket prices were $15 per person. 

She pointed out that this will be especially helpful at the Friday evening event when many of the dads who are getting off work and have to get ready for the event will not have to worry about dinner prior to the dance. 

The parks department’s first Family Game Night event was held last Friday. Wieringa said 32 people attended the event despite inclement weather, and those who attended recommended that the parks department hold more of these events in the future. The event was held in collaboration with Warsaw Community Library.

The next regular meeting will be held at 5:15 p.m. Feb. 18.