Undaunted by the cold, skaters forsake warm homes for a chilly turn on the ice

December 31, 1993|By Shanon D. Murray | Shanon D. Murray,Staff Writer

Stacy Lewis of Pikesville braved yesterday's cold to give her son a birthday present -- ice skating at Rash Field in the Inner Harbor.

"It's freezing but you have to take the time and the opportunity to expose children to new things," Mrs. Lewis said, quickly lacing her mustard yellow ice skates to catch up with her 6-year-old son, Alexander.

L "He loves roller skating but the jury is still out on this."

Some 125 skaters -- parents and their children -- crowded the Baltimore On Ice skating rink near the Maryland Science Center yesterday.

Kent Douglas, the rink's manager, said he expected more than )) 300 patrons during the day yesterday. He predicted another 200 or more for the evening session that began at 8 p.m.

"Business is always better after Christmas than before because after spending all their time in the malls, people want to go places and take their friends and relatives," Mr. Douglas said.

Steve Siegel seemed a little incredulous that his daughter would ask to go skating at an outdoor rink. "I skate, too, but it's too cold for me," said the former Bostonian who has been skating since he was 7 years old.

But the cold weather did not seem to daunt his daughter. "It's more fun than indoors because there's more of a thrill, and the view of the harbor is beautiful. It's easy to get warm," said 15-year-old Dara.

Gwen Parker said she asked her daughter, Candace, 23, to make a list of things she wanted to do while she was home from college for the holidays. Ice skating was at the top of the list.

"I wanted to experience the ice and be outside," said Candace Parker, a student at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn.

For 10-year-old Lindsay Welsh, her visit to the skating rink was a little bit more than just an outing with her family. The Pasadena resident was practicing for the Colonial Invitational ice skating competition that will be held next month in Lowell, Mass.

Lindsay has been a member of the Chesapeake Stars, a precision ice skating team based in Severna Park, for two years. She has been ice skating since she was 4 years old.

"I think its beautiful out here today as long as you are bundled up," said Bonnie Welsh, Lindsay's mother.

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