Friday night skate nights came to the David M. McCarthy Memorial Ice Arena at the right time for new Batavia resident Deborah Deegan.
And she likes it better than the open skate options she had in Rochester.
"There's not that many places, even in Rochester," Deegan said. "There's only Horizon, and there is a place called Skate Lovers. It's very similar to what you guys are doing here, but it's not an actual rink. It's like a warehouse. And I think they built the flooring, so it's not quite as good as the floor in here. And I don't like the music that much. It's not my music. I like the music here."
And at The McCarthy, she said, you can't beat the price.
"Five dollars is like a quarter of the costs of going to Horizon in Rochester and half the cost of going to Skate Lovers," she said.
The 32-year-old Deegan said she is pretty new to Batavia and is working at Copperhead Creek. She loves to skate and is happy the operators of The McCarthy have started Friday night skate nights. She said she loves figure skating and enjoys getting the extra practice time. She is also involved in roller derby.
She started ice skating when she was little but could never do much except go forward. Roller skating, she said, has improved her ice skating.
"Two years ago, when the rinks opened back up after COVID, I found myself sitting there going, 'Why, when have I been skating since I was four years old, I can't do anything cool?' From there, I decided I was going to teach myself how to go backward. And here we are, two years later, and skating at the skate park on these (roller rinks), is what has gotten me so much progress. When I got back on the ice rink, I could do jumps and all types of stuff that I could never do before."
Deegan said Batavia residents who haven't been to skate night yet should come out on a Friday night. The floor is good, the price is right, the music makes it fun, and it's also a great workout. She said too many people spend way too much time on their phones. They need to be more active.
"I also do this to get fit," she said. "I read that professional skaters burn up to 800 calories an hour, which is, like, unheard of. So it's a great way to get physical activity and a workout in without actually working out."
The McCarthy now has shelves of new skates available for kids and adults. See our previous story: GC Youth Bureau bets on fun for youth with purchase of skates at The McCarthy.
The regular Friday night skate is from 7 to 9 p.m., with the exception of July 7, when there will be an 80s and 90s skate night party from 8 to 11 p.m. The entry fee for that event is $10 with $5 rentals and includes a DJ. It's a 21-and-over event with beer and cider served.
Photos by Howard Owens.