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Published April 02, 2013, 06:02 PM

Two new indoor rinks could come to Grand Forks soon

Plans for two additional sheets of indoor ice continue to skate along in Grand Forks. The Park District is in the process of putting together the final blueprints for the new facility on the south end of town next to Choice Health and Fitness. Groundbreaking could even start in a few months.

By: David Schwab, WDAZ

Plans for two additional sheets of indoor ice continue to skate along in Grand Forks. The Park District is in the process of putting together the final blueprints for the new facility on the south end of town next to Choice Health and Fitness. Groundbreaking could even start in a few months.

Currently the Grand Forks Park District owns four indoor ice rinks, with the last one built ten years ago. And with a growing number of kids playing hockey and figure skating there is a fight for ice time.

Bill Palmiscno, Grand Forks Park District : "Middle school kids practicing at 9 O'clock at night by the time they get out of the rink it's 11 o'clock."

The nine outdoor rinks help for a couple months of the year, but because it depends on the weather, it's not a sure thing. The park district is close to their fundraising goal to build a new facility that will house two more sheets of ice. The largest contributors are the Blue Line Club donating $2.5 million and the Engelstad Foundation donating a half a million dollars. Park District Officials says about 5 million dollars in all has been raised for the project.

It's estimated to cost in the neighborhood of $7.5 million to build. The new rinks will also allow kids to be the home team more often, and that makes sense on a couple of levels.

Palmiscno: "Right now if we have a tournament in town we almost have to send out all the other teams out of town so that we can tie up three rinks."

Tim Rieopelle, Grand Forks Blue Line Club: "Sending our kids out of town to play in tournament when we could be holding the tournament in town. That accounts for millions of dollars every year that we could keep locally."

The new facility could be open for use by March of next year.

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