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Time to lace up the skates: Dumfries to offer free ice skating starting this weekend

Ice skating returns to Harris Pavilion, Stonebridge town center

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Ice skating at Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center

Skaters enjoy the skating rink at Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center during December 2020.

Dumfries is adding something new to its holiday celebrations – a free ice-skating rink.

As part of the festivities around the town’s 47th Annual Christmas parade, the town decided to offer ice skating at Garrison Park, behind the town hall, said Dumfries Town Manager Keith Rogers, Jr.

The parade begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 11. It steps off from the Triangle Shopping Plaza and ends at the Dumfries Town Hall.

The ice-skating rink also opens for the first time on Saturday, Dec. 11, from noon to 4 p.m. It will also be open from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 12 and again the following weekend, Dec. 18-19, during the same hours. Skates are available and free.

The town contracted with a private company to build the rink and provide the skates.

“We just wanted to keep the activities going,” Rogers said. “With kids out of school, we thought it would be a nice outdoor activity since the pandemic has limited indoor activities.” 

Rogers did not say how much the rink will cost the town. The town plans to offset the expense with money collected from parade sponsors, he said. 

“I want to encourage everyone to come out to the Christmas parade. We are thinking this will be one of our best parades,” he said.

The parade will include 50 entries. 

“It looks like we have everything a parade should have,” he said, to include bands, floats, dance teams, Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus and balloons.

Although, the balloons “will not be as big as those in the Macy’s parade,” Rogers said.

“We are also hoping people will take advantage of the skating rink,” he added. “This is open to everyone.” 

Rogers said the town wants to bring more activities to Garrison Park. The interest in the skating rink will help it gauge the town residents’ interest in that. In the future, the town may host movies in the park during the summer months.

“It will also let us test out our operations as we grow our activity base,” he said.

Reach Aileen Streng at


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