NYC for the Holidays

Avenue Queue

by David Sokol

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  • Destination: Wollman Rink
    Central Park, off Sixth Avenue and West 59th Street, 212-439-6900, Manhattan
    Alternatives: The Ice Rink at Riverbank State Park
    679 Riverside Drive, 212-694-3642, Manhattan
    Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers
    Chelsea Piers, Pier 61, West Side Highway and West 21st Street, 212-336-6100, Manhattan
    City Ice Pavilion
    47-32 32nd Place, 718-706-6667, Long Island City, Queens
    Taking to the ice at Wollman Rink at holiday time is like entering a human-scale snow globe, especially when music from the PA system accompanies the scene. The metaphor isn't lost on residents or visitors, as multitudes of both descend upon the wintry oasis in Central Park. One way of bypassing throngs is to watch skaters, landscape and skyline from a seat on Wollman's sidelines (hello, Love Story), or to head elsewhere. In Harlem, Riverbank State Park offers a 69-foot-high perch over the Hudson River and a wealth of activities that includes skating: just in time for winter, New York City's only state park converts its roller rink into an ice palace. Meanwhile, both the Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers and City Ice Pavilion in Queens are open to the public throughout the year. The Sky Rink gets high marks for its picturesque setting also on the Hudson River, and City Ice Pavilion makes up for its warehouse location with a huge unfettered space and low fees.

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