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Two local men bring outdoor ice-skating rink to Sugar City

Rink 99 in Sugar City, Idaho. | Courtesy Rink 99
SUGAR CITY — Two Rexburg men recently opened up an outdoor ice-skating rink in Sugar City with the hope to make Idaho winters something that more people enjoy.
Rink 99, which is located at Veteran’s Park, was started by Jeff McClure and Matt Pyles. The rink opened Wednesday, and features real ice, a big rink that’s 55 feet by 105 feet and a smaller rink that’s 20 feet by 40 feet for those learning to skate that are nervous of starting on the bigger one.
“People either love or hate the winter, and we’re trying to give more reasons to love the winter and get out and do stuff in the wintertime,” Pyles told “There’s really nothing to do in the wintertime inside of Sugar, but now, people can ice-skate. It gives a little bit more light to the dark time that people have.”
The idea to start Rink 99 came after McClure moved to Rexburg from Washington a few years ago. Pyles helped him move in and noticed all his hockey gear and asked McClure if he played hockey. He remembers McClure saying yes and that if he was going to live in Rexburg and have to deal with the cold, he was going to have a skating rink in his backyard.
For the last few years, Pyles and McClure have played hockey in the winter about three times a week in McClure’s backyard on a rink he purchased, which is now the small rink at Rink 99.
“We wanted to make it bigger,” Pyles explained. “Jeff talked to the city of Sugar about doing it there and they were like, ‘You’re going to do something in Sugar? Not Rexburg?’ (McClure) said, ‘Yeah.’ … The city of Sugar has been awesome with us.”
Pyles said they use a John Deere tractor that has a Zamboni attachment and that McClure keeps the ice in “perfect condition.”

The John Deere tractor and Zamboni attachment.| Courtesy Rink 99
The rink is currently operating under temporary hours until Jan. 1 or until it’s under 32 degrees all day. Temporary hours are Monday through Thursday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Regular hours will be Monday through Thursday from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. There is no age limit and everyone is welcome to skate, according to Pyles.
Drop in hockey is also offered on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. All ages are invited to play.
“We want to be open as much as we can,” Pyles added.
Prices range from $5 to $9 and all prices include skates. Hot chocolate, gatorade, chips, candy and hand warmers are available to purchase too.
“Come skate. It’s easy to learn. You don’t need to be really good,” Pyles said. “It’s a great experience to enjoy what eastern Idaho weather gives to us.”

Youth skating at Rink 99.| Courtesy Rink 99

Rink 99 in Sugar City. | Courtesy Rink 99

Skates available for rent at Rink 99. | Courtesy Rink 99
The post Two local men bring outdoor ice-skating rink to Sugar City appeared first on East Idaho News.

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