Families hoping to take their kids for a spin on the ice might soon have a new rink in Riverhead to enjoy.
Ray Pickersgill, president of the Riverhead Business Improvement District, and Chris Kempner, Riverhead Town community development director, came before the board at their Thursday work session to discuss proposed plans for an ice rink that would be located near the Peconic Riverfront, behind the Riverhead Diner & Grill, near the town's comfort station.
The project would cost approximately $230,000, with approximately $100,000 secured by a county grant, Kempner said.
Councilwoman Jodi Giglio asked how many parking spots would need to be eliminated to create the rink; eight spaces would be eliminated.
Riverhead Town Supervisor Sean Walter said he'd like to see the ice rink become a "centerpiece," with an ampitheater and, eventually, a roof.
Kempner said one of the reasons the project has been held up is that the goal is to make the site "grander" than just an ice rink.
Funding would be used for essentials such as ice skates, skate sharpening, and helmets, as well as a machine to clean the ice.
Councilman George Gabrielsen said perhaps a concession for skate rentals could be set up at . Gabrielsen also said, since the county would require admission be free for county residents for seven years, another option might be to bond for the $100,000; Walter said bonding is not possible due to the two percent property tax cap.
"The advantage of the county giving us the money is that it will kick start the project," Gabrielsen said.
Fees can be charged for skate rental, lessons, and maintenance fees, Walter and Councilman John Dunleavy said.
Walter asked how the BID planned to raise the additional $130,000; Pickersgill said corporate sponsorships would be sought.
The town has looked to Greenport Village, which has a municipal ice rink, for background and information.
Giglio raised concerns about staffing; Walter asked how the rink could be closed at night.
Pickersgill said other town facilities, such as Stotzky Park, are not staffed at night.
"That's what bothers me about the new ballfields," Walter said. "To leave that multi-million dollar venture completely unmanned 24/7."
Dunleavy said the goal is to look into security at Enterprise Park at Calveron, where the new ballfields will be lcoated, and have someone patrol the entire EPCAL parcel at night.
Giglio also raised concerns about cleaning the rink; Walter said while a roof is planned, the roof will cost another half million dollars. Walter also said perhaps members of the town's recreation department could help to maintain the rink. Volunteers could also be recruited to help, Pickersgill said.