By Garrett Estrada
Ely Times staff writerBroadbent Park Ice Rink1

An ice rink will open Sunday at Broadbent Park after the Ely City Council approved it at its last meeting.  The rink will start construction Thursday and be 150 feet by 100 feet. Admission will be free.
City Councilman and advocate of the skating rink Bruce Setterstrom said this is just the first step in adding outdoor activities to the community.

“I think the city is obligated to give the city as many amenities as it can,” Setterstrom said. “We promised that during the election and we are trying to stay true to our promises.”

Setterstrom credits the initial idea for the rink to Patricia Fua, who said she saw a sledding hill in Truckee covered in kids and wanted to do something similar in Ely.

“They were having so much fun and I thought, we could do that in Broadbent Park,” Fua said. “The kids usually have a sled anyway so why not have the ice skating again and make it into a little winterfest.”

The proposal for a skating rink went in front of the city council several times, but was always tabled awaiting further information. Setterstrom said if it had not been approved at the last meeting, it would have been too late and the rink would not have happened this year.

The issue of funding became a hiccup for the project, with council members looking for somewhere in the budget to pull the estimated $1,000 it cost to build the rink. That became a mute point when Robinson Nevada Mine General Manager Cary Brunson said the mine would donate the money needed.

Setterstrom also wanted to thank Bath Lumber for keeping costs low by selling the supplies needed at cost. Donna Bath said that she is “excited” about the project.

“We are the closest neighbors to the rink and we are absolutely delighted to be able to use the park for what it is for, the kids,” Bath said.

Fua is now working with Setterstrom on furthering her “winterfest” idea for the ice rink. Currently planned for Dec. 27 and 28 as well as Jan. 3 and 4, “winterfest” would involve a sledding hill next to the rink, fire barrels to keep attendees warm and a concession stand.
“This is really a community thing. Everybody is working together to get it done,” Setterstrom said.

This is just the first of several projects Setterstrom has in mind for the community, including a dog park and a BMX park. The ice rink is planned to remain open through the end of February, according to Setterstrom, though he said it could stay open longer if weather permits.

To volunteer to help with the construction of the rink, contact Setterstrom at (775)-293-1184. To volunteer to run the concession stand, contact Fua at (775)-289-2655.