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Sign of spring: Minneapolis to stop maintaining outdoor ice, but you can still skate

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A sure sign that spring is near: the outdoor skating season is wrapping up in the State of Hockey.

The 47 outdoor rinks that the Minneapolis Parks Board operates will no longer be maintaining the rinks, and the warming houses and restrooms at those rinks will be closed starting Sunday night, KARE 11 says.

Instead of shoveling and flooding the rinks, parks crews will shift their focus to getting outdoor fields ready for spring sports – including removing hockey boards once the ice starts to thaw, WCCO reports.

For those who aren't ready to hang up their skates, Windom Northeast Park Director Dave Garmany told the news station that as long as you find the ice safe, people are welcome to skate on them.

The pond hockey season got off to a slow start this season because of warm temperatures for much of December, which delayed many outdoor rinks from opening. And the season may be wrapping up across Minnesota in the coming weeks as ice conditions start deteriorating when temperatures rise – it could reach 40 degrees starting Friday.

For the status of outdoor rinks and warming houses in other cities, city websites typically have hotlines that provide closing information.

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