The estimated cost for construction and the first year of operation is $445,000. The foundation has collaborated with local businesses and organizations, including the City of Boise, the Parks & Recreation Department, and the Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health, to reach this goal. Currently, they are working to secure the final $150,000 needed for the project.
“This is a project that has been years in the making,” said Jenn Hensley, president and executive director of Downtown Boise Foundation. “It is thrilling to be able to provide a place downtown where all can find a new adventure, come together and experience joy with accessible activities—both now and for years to come.”
“We’re excited to support Glide on Grove because it encourages physical activity during the winter. This free amenity will give Idaho families a fun, healthy activity to try when they visit Downtown Boise,” said Kendra Witt-Doyle, Executive Director, Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health.
“As a placemaking organization, we are committed to keeping Downtown Boise free and accessible to all,” said Moya Shatz Dolsby, Downtown Boise Foundation board vice president. “We wanted to guarantee there were no barriers for any community member to experience the joy of the season at the skate rink. Full funding ensures this exciting downtown activity is accessible and completely free for all Boise visitors and guests, including free skate rentals and skate time.”
Glide on Grove is scheduled to run from Thanksgiving weekend 2023 through the final Sunday in January 2024. Once materials are constructed, Downtown Boise will have the marginal operation costs covered to bring the rink back year after year.
The planned rink will be an approximately approximately 75-foot square space surrounding the City of Boise’s Holiday Tree in The Glove Plaza. Rather than temperature-dependent ice, the rink will be made from a synthetic material that is used just like ice yet has low-maintenance needs and enables the rink to provide family-friendly winter recreation into Downtown Boise for an expected 10-year life span.
“I am grateful for Downtown Boise’s vision and commitment to making this community-focused centerpiece come to life,” said Boise Mayor Lauren McLean. “The winter season is so special in Boise, especially around the holidays, and a great time to enjoy all that downtown has to offer. Having Glide on Grove activating downtown will give our residents another opportunity to get outside and be active, while also supporting the local businesses that make Boise shine.