Firefighters build ice rink for Passaic residents

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PASSAIC -

A group of Passaic firefighters have built the city’s first-ever ice rink.

The idea for the rink was sparked after a Passaic child asked Mayor Hector Lora why the city did not have an ice rink. Lora says that the city did not have the budget for it. Luckily a group of volunteers was able to make the wish for an ice rink a reality.

“All I did was ask and I had off-duty personnel just show up,” says Passaic Fire Chief Patrick Trentacost.

The firefighters soon got to work building the rink at Third Ward Park on Passaic Avenue. Materials were donated by city residents. They were also able to give out 42 pairs of skates to some children.

Opening day for the rink was Tuesday. Mayor Lara says that the rink is not just about recreation for the city’s children, but also about opening their eyes to new dreams.

“When you expose kids to things for the first time, you open up their minds to possibilities,” he says. “They go, ‘You know, I’ve never tried this before. What else can I try for the first time?’”

The mayor says that the rink will be open for the rest of the winter. But temperatures are expected to rise into the 50s over the next few days, which could cause the rink to close.

Fire crews will be monitoring the ice every day to make sure it is safe.

Mayor Lora says that there is talk of possibly turning the area into a water park for the summer.

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