Skip to main content

State Fairgrounds' ice rink to melt away for good this spring

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

Hockey's long ride at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds is coming to an end.

State Fair officials announced Tuesday that this winter is the last for the ice rink at the Lee & Rose Warner Coliseum, the Star Tribune reports.

The Fair says the cost of replacing the 38-year-old equipment used to make ice at the arena is prohibitive. The Star Tribune says the decision means new homes will be needed next winter for the Como High School boys hockey team, the Hamline University women's team, a number of high school playoff games, and various youth and adult leagues.

In announcing the decision, Fair officials also cited diminished use of the ice surface.

General Manager Jerry Hammer tells the Pioneer Press the rink now hosts fewer than 50 events. That's less than one-third of the 150 or so it saw during its heyday and Hammer says it does not justify spending more than $1 million on replacing the deteriorated ice-making equipment.

Heyday? Hey, the folks at Vintage Minnesota Hockey remember those days well. Today's arena occupies the site of the old St. Paul Hippodrome, which was home to the St. Paul Athletic Club team that went to the national finals in 1922 and '23.

The Lee & Rose Warner Coliseum of today was built in 1951 and did not host ice events until 1975. But given its pedigree, Vintage Hockey calls it one of Minnesota's most hallowed hockey grounds.

Hockey will continue there through February. The Fair says next year it will expand its schedule of retail and special events at the Coliseum into the winter months.

Next Up

image

How the fastest animal on the planet returned to MN after local extinction

The fastest animal on Earth had once vanished from Minnesota and Wisconsin.

image

St. Paul's new 'skate trail' brings non-traditional park to life

Gateway Park is the first of four parks to open in the Highland Bridge redevelopment.

FWDqyh6UEAENgIG

80 mph winds, large hail possible with severe storms in MN

A severe thunderstorm watch is in effect for much of the state until 3 a.m. Saturday.

290376311_5009722282489162_198055240351933487_n

30 people evacuated as flooding hammers small town

It's assumed that at least eight inches of rain fell in Randall, with more heavy rain expected Friday night into Saturday morning.

Intersection in Rochester.

Boy dies in motorcycle crash in Rochester

Police are investigating as of Friday afternoon.

Tab2FileL (13)

Numerous severe storms likely in Minnesota Friday night

Watch the video for the full details with meteorologist Sven Sundgaard.

court room

Teen pleads guilty in shooting death of 15-year-old girl in Columbia Heights

Damico Jamal-Tokyo High will receive a sentence in juvenile court, along with an adult prison sentence.

Screen Shot 2022-04-25 at 11.00.01 AM

Walz wants to use surplus money to send direct payments to Minnesotans

It's a renewed effort from a previous proposal from Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan's supplemental budget in January.

Ron Johnson

Jan. 6 committee says aide for WI senator tried to give fake elector info to Pence

The attempt was discovered through text messages in the ongoing public hearing held by the Jan. 6 select committee.

Stock U of M sign

Minnesota State colleges, U of M boosting tuition again

The Minnesota State system's Board of Trustee's approved the increase Wednesday.

covid

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Friday, June 24

The next daily update will be provided Monday, June 27.

Pro choice rally

Walz, Jensen react to historic Supreme Court reversal of Roe v. Wade

After voting to overturn Roe, conservative Justice Clarence Thomas has hinted contraception and same-sex marriage protections should follow.

Related