Winooski microbrewery opens skate rink for customers

Published: Jan. 27, 2022 at 4:15 PM EST
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WINOOSKI, Vt. (WCAX) - It doesn’t get much more ‘Vermont’ than ice skating and beer. Now, one microbrewery in Winooski has decided to combine the two, opening their own little rink for customers to enjoy.

Bring your ID and your ice skates -- Four Quarters Brewing in Winooski has something new to bring folks in and it’s not an IPA.

“It leaked a little bit but we got it frozen over and so far so good. We even converted a little floor cleaner into a little mini Zamboni,” said Brian Eckert, the brewery’s owner. He says he got the idea from a popular Instagram account and has some friends make rinks in their backyards, too. “We just one day saw the patio and thought, if we cleared this, out we could probably try to do this just for fun.”

With that figure-it-out-as-you-go mentality -- and some frosty weather -- the Four Quarters rink is now open for business and Eckert says patrons are loving it. “It’s the old making lemonade out of lemons type of thing with all the low temps and just have fun with it. Why not?” he said.

If beer and blades seem like a recipe for disaster, Eckert is one step ahead of you. There’s no drinking or eating on the ice, customers have to sign a waiver, and there’s a list of rules. “We only let a couple people on the ice at once because it is kind of small and just for everyone to have a good enjoyable experience,” Eckert said.

But he says he’s got plenty of faith in people to be responsible enough to safely enjoy a brew and a little time outside. “Being in Vermont, we have a long winter most of the time. The old joke is nine months of winter and three months of bad skiing, and so one more thing to enjoy the winter as it’s here is kind of the purpose of it,” Eckert said.

If you want to come out and enjoy it for yourself, just note you do have to bring your own pair of skates. Eckert jokes that the rental program will be coming next year. They do hope to make this a yearly happening, assuming the weather cooperates in the future.

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