THE long-awaited return of a roller skating rink in Gympie is in its final stages.
THE long-awaited return of a roller skating rink in Gympie is in its final stages. NadiaCruzova

Get your skates on Gympie; the rink is back

THE long-awaited return of a roller skating rink in Gympie is in its final stages, with the business owners who want to do just that expected to announce the location of the Gympie Skatezone centre later this week.

Since the closure of Gympie's original Skateland in the early 90s, there have been repeated and persistent calls to bring skating back to town.

"We've only been living here for about 10 or 11 years, but we've heard plenty about what the old centre meant to locals," Skatezone co-owner Darren Nyberg says.

"Reception to the plans have so far been very positive."

A patron enjoying a skate at the old Gympie Skateland.
A patron enjoying a skate at the old Gympie Skateland. CONTRIBUTED

With the original rink a popular destination for an entire generation of Gympie youngsters, the project has received vocal support from the community, bolstered by nostalgia and new opportunities for family fun.

Aiming for a mid-to-late February 2017 opening, Skatezone would coincide with the opening of another significant family facility, the Aquatic Recreation Centre.

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Mr Nyberg and his wife Lena have been planning the skating centre for nearly four years - motivated in part by their own connection to roller sports.

Gympie Skateland
Gympie Skateland Contributed

"We've wanted something here for many years," Mr Nyberg says. "We're heavily involved with roller sports - roller hockey in particular."

Sports including hockey, roller derby, as well as speed and artistic skating will be the main focus of Gympie's new rink.

However, families and those looking to remember a treasured part of Gympie's recent history can be assured there will be a number of sessions for public use.

"There are already plans for a sound system, lights as well as a very cool smoke machine," Mr Nyberg says.

 

"We're also up for school sessions so students can come out and have a skate too."

ROLLING IN: Gympie Skatezone co-owner Darren Nyberg said his love of roller hockey was one of the main factors for pursuing a new rink in Gympie.
ROLLING IN: Gympie Skatezone co-owner Darren Nyberg said his love of roller hockey was one of the main factors for pursuing a new rink in Gympie. Jacob Carson
Gympie Times


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