Free skating, swimming sessions available in Hants County this winter

Carole Morris-Underhill
Published on January 1, 2017

Although it was his first time skating, Falmouth's Cole Hopkins seemed to be having a blast with his dad, firefighter Wayne Hopkins.

©Carole Morris-Underhill

HANTS COUNTY, N.S. – Windsor and West Hants recreation departments are helping families enjoy some free activities this winter.

There are a number of free skating sessions planned, as well as time in the pool. They have a special curling day set aside to let people give it a try, and there are three snowshoeing stomps planned.

The free activities were made possible by a grant from the Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage.

Jovie MacInnis, 5, focuses on lapping around the rink Dec. 31. The Windsor girl first started novice skills hockey in 2016 and spent the free public skate in Windsor showing her dad what she learned.

©Carole Morris-Underhill


There will be free skating at the Hants Exhibition Arena on Saturday mornings from 9:10-10 a.m. on Jan. 7, 14, and 21; Feb. 4, 11, 18, 25, and March 4 and March 25.

Free skates are also taking place at the Newport and District Arena in Brooklyn. The free skates will be on Sunday afternoons from 3:40-4:30 p.m. from Dec. 4 to March 5. On Wednesday afternoons, there's an hour set aside for seniors and parents with tots from 12:30-1:30 p.m. from Dec. 21 to March 29.


Free swims

An hour-and-a-half swimming pool rental has been arranged at King’s-Edgehill School's indoor pool on Jan. 14, Jan. 28, Feb. 11, Feb. 25 and March 4. The time for the free swim is 12:30-2 p.m.

Children under the age of nine must be accompanied by an adult or caregiver who is at least 13 years or older.

There is a limit of 80 people in the pool at a time.

Syrinity Smith, 10, and her friend Lannie Burrell, 9, stopped by the Hants Exhibition Arena for one of their free holiday public skates.

©Carole Morris-Underhill

Cole Hopkins gets ready to take the ice for the first time Dec. 31.
Carole Morris-Underhill

Snowshoe stomps

There will be special guided snowshoe hikes held throughout the winter months.

The first free event is Jan. 28 from 1-4 p.m. at the Dill Family Farm.

The very next day, Jan. 29, from 1-3 p.m., visit the Irishman's Road Recreation Site for a scenic tour.

On Feb. 11 from 1-3 p.m, join the crew at Castle Frederick Farm for a hike at the historic property.

Snowshoes can be loaned from the West Hants Municipal Office for free. Windsor offers free snowshoe rentals for children age 12 years and under. Teens and adults may rent snowshoes for $5 a day. Rentals are made through the Hants County War Memorial Community Centre.



There will be a special 'try it' curling session at the Windsor Curling Club on Jan. 7 from 2-3:30 p.m.

No experience is required.

Youths under 12 are required to wear a helmet before taking the ice.

Clean shoes are required to participate.