Dance/roller skating as a public activity: if NYC can do it, why not Northfield?

dance skating in NYC's Central Park dance skating in NYC's Central Park

dance skating in NYC's Central Park dance skating in NYC's Central Park dance skating in NYC's Central Park dance skating rules, NYC's Central Park
While strolling through New York City’s Central Park when we visited there in late July, we came upon a section of the park cordoned off for dance skating, run by the Central Park Dance Skaters Association:

Every Saturday, Sunday and Holiday from 2:30 to 6:30pm from mid-April through Halloween. The CPDSA sets up a sophisticated sound system and plays music for all dance skaters. The event is free and is supported by the membership of the CPDSA. Our Circle is attended by hundreds of skaters and enjoyed by thousands of spectators each weekend.

It not only drew a large group of dance skaters but an even larger crowd of onlookers because the skaters were pretty entertaining, if not for their skating ability, acrobatics and various antics then for their outfits.

It occurred to me that something similar could easily be done on and around Bridge Square in downtown Northfield.  All it would take would be some local organization (YMCA? Community Ed and Rec? NDDC?) to take it on for a season.

See this 30-second video:


  1. Alicia Reuter said:

    As a figure skater who has also dabbled in ice dancing and a soon-to-be-inline marathoner, I would like to say that there is no way that would work on Bridge Square. While I think that would be a really cool idea and I’m curious if there would be local people who would participate in something like that, you would really need to do it on a basketball court (or similar). The attraction of doing it on Bridge Square would be cool, but the pavement area is too small, there are too many obstacles, and the seams in the pavement are also a hazard to those doing deep edges on rollerblades. While closing off Division or Water Street would provide sufficient smooth pavement, I’m not sure if it’d be worth the hassle.

    August 20, 2012
  2. Griff Wigley said:

    Alicia, thanks for chiming in. I should have been more specific. I would envision the dance skating/roller blading happening on the streets that surround Bridge Square (4th, Division, Water, and the one-way street in front of the Post Office) so that skaters would circle the park. The music area would be on Bridge Square itself, though with the new surface on the east end, I could see that being used for stunts/acrobatics, slow dancing, etc.

    I don’t think it would be too much of a hassle to put up barricades, since it’s done all the time for downtown events. The organizers would pay the City a small fee to have them dropped off and picked up. And it might work to have the barricades just close off part of the streets so that traffic could still pass in one direction.

    Might all this work?

    August 21, 2012

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