A little fog wasn't going to keep Salemites away from Riverfront Park Saturday morning, for the official opening day of Salem on Ice.
Riverfront Park is now the home of a temporary 60-feet-by-120-feet ice rink, which will be open daily through Jan. 21.
Lines started to form before 10 a.m. as people waited to lace up their skates and get on the ice for the first time.
The sounds of little kids laughing, skating by smiling while parents took pictures. People chatting while drinking hot cocoa, it all felt surreal to Troy Acor, who is business partners with the owners of the ice rink.
"It happens like a light switch," he said. "From trying to battle through everything that is trying to keep you from opening to being open. Now, everyone is happy."
Acor said that while he was walking through Riverfront Park earlier this year, he pictured how beautiful an ice rink would look next to the carousel and the river.
That thought would soon become a reality. Now, after more than a month of construction, it's open for business.
Salem on Ice had a soft opening Friday, Nov. 17, where more than 40 skaters got to experience Salem's first ice rink since the 1950s a day before it's official opening.
Salem was home to an ice rink in the 1940s on the corner of Union and Capitol streets NE, newspaper archives show, which closed in 1951.
Joanne Aguirre, of McMinnville, stood by the edge of the ice rink watching her children Adan, 10, and Sophie, 9, skate lap after lap after lap.
"It's so nice to be able to come here, and not have to go all the way to Portland," she said.
Salem on Ice is Riverfront Park's very own winter wonderland. While Christmas music fills the tent and lights twinkle above and below, people get to pretend that they are the main character in a holiday rom-com for 90 minutes.
Wait, that isn't just me, is it?
If you go
Hours: Hours vary, visit www.salemonice.com for more information, open daily Nov. 18 to Jan. 21
Where: Riverfront Park, Salem
Cost: 90-minute skating sessions, including skate rental, are $12 (ages 3 to 12 years) and $15. Season passes, 10-pack skater passes, discounts for large groups and family packs are available as well.
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