Downtown’s coolest new spot opens this month in the form of a pop-up ice skating rink
By Taylor Shillam
Everyone is welcome at CDA on Ice. That message is clear as Coeur d’Alene’s new pop-up ice rink prepares for its grand opening at the end of the month in downtown’s McEuen Park. The picturesque rink promises to bring unique opportunities to connect with friends and loved ones this holiday season, while taking in views of Tubbs Hill and the Coeur d’Alene Resort.
“Imagine twinkling lights, fire pits, igloos and loaded hot cocoa,” the rink’s online blog describes. “This outdoor ice rink will deliver memories to last a lifetime.”
CDA on Ice is brought to Coeur d’Alene by the Murray family: Andrea and Jerome Murray, and their daughters Addison, Ally and Ashlyn.
“We were both born and raised in the Pacific Northwest,” shared Andrea. “We knew when we moved back up here four years ago, we wanted to bring the magic of an outdoor holiday ice rink to Coeur d’Alene. McEuen Park is the perfect location. Our downtown is a vibrant, fun spot and has preserved a small-town feel.”
When it comes to owning and operating a pop-up ice rink, the Murray family are certainly not beginners. They owned and operated Modesto on Ice in Modesto, California, for five memorable seasons before moving back to the Pacific Northwest.
“More than 1,000 happy skaters filled the ice most days at Modesto Ice,” their blog reads, with that attendance largely thanks to their family involvement in rink's daily operations. They remained dedicated to providing a magical customer experience, with a contagious joy that inspired lifelong connections.
The Murrays shared their gratitude for the relationships made, not only with skaters and visitors, but long-term relationships made with employees.
“We’re a family run business. And for us the rink is about family, friends and connection,” Andrea said. “We’re so excited to meet the families here and give them an opportunity to make holiday memories with their loved ones each season.”
The Murrays look forward to their Coeur d’Alene rink becoming a reality this season, especially after a year-long delay brought on by the pandemic.
Plans for the rink were originally proposed in the winter of 2019. “The City of Coeur d’Alene Parks and Recreation Department was enthused from the moment we approached them with plans for the rink,” Andrea said. The Coeur d’Alene City Council then unanimously approved their rink plans in the spring of 2020.
That enthusiasm was put on hold with the onset of COVID-19, prompting the difficult decision to postpone the rink’s forecasted opening of the winter of 2020. Still, when the Murrays approached the Parks and Recreation Department, City Commissioners and Coeur d’Alene City Council for a second time in the spring of 2021, they were once again unanimously and enthusiastically received.
Now, with new plans to open on Saturday, October 30, the Murrays look forward to bringing a unique pop-up skating experience and community gathering place to Coeur d’Alene for the holidays.
The CDA on Ice experience will include a Skate Shed, Snack Shack sponsored by local favorite Wake Up Call, and a designated party space. The “artfully decorated” party space will feature a mix of urban and rustic décor, providing a beautiful gathering space to take a break and enjoy a snack or beverage. Private ice bookings, events and celebrations will be welcomed to reserve throughout the season.
The open-air rink, set to be located in front of the McEuen Park Pavilion, will be lined with lights and provide views of Tubbs Hill, Lake Coeur d’Alene and the Coeur d’Alene Resort, promising the ultimate festive experience—especially when the famous Resort holiday lights make their appearance.
There will also be a fire pit, patio heater and three cozy private igloos available by reservation with space to seat up to eight guests.
Each admission ticket will grant guests a skate rental and 90-minute skating session, with sessions running throughout the day and 15-minute breaks between each. The CDA on Ice team re-sharpens their skates after every 15 to 20 minutes of ice time to remove deformities and ensure their rentals stay in mint condition.
Guests who bring their own skates will receive $2 off their skate session, and lockers will be available free of charge for storing additional items. Spectators are welcome to accompany paid skaters for free to snap photos, grab a warm beverage from the Snack Shack, and enjoy the festive, community-focused atmosphere.
Weather permitting, CDA on Ice will be open daily from October 30 through Sunday, January 2. While the day-to-day schedule will vary, taking into account the holiday breaks and scheduling of Coeur d’Alene schools, the rink’s holiday and weekend hours of operation will primarily be 10am to 10pm.
As the rink will be a few degrees cooler than outside temps, guests are encouraged to arrive in their warm winter gear—long socks, hats, gloves and warm coats are highly recommended!
Sponsorship opportunities are available for those interested in investing in a community experience. CDA on Ice’s community partners and sponsors include Wake Up Call, Heritage Health and Numerica Credit Union.
“Numerica chose to be the presenting sponsor of CDA on Ice because we saw this as an opportunity to bring joy and lasting memories to families in our community,” said Carla Cicero, president and CEO of Numerica. “CDA on Ice strongly aligns with Numerica’s mission of enhancing lives, fulfilling dreams and building communities. The pop-up ice rink is bringing something new and fun that families can look forward to this holiday season.”
Numerica plans to join in the fun with CDA on Ice all season long, with volunteers bringing surprise giveaways to the community throughout the season.
“On winter nights, CDA on Ice will be the social hub for date nights, family outings and company parties,” they shared. “Numerica looks forward to being a part of Coeur d’Alene’s newest gathering place. We are beyond excited to see people out on the ice for the first time.”
This winter, CDA on Ice promises to be the coolest place in town! Follow along on their Facebook, Instagram, TikTok profiles, blog and website at CDAonIce.com, as they post regular updates leading up to opening day. Ticket sales are live on their website as of October 1, and will remain first come, first served.
The love poured into CDA on Ice by the Murray family is already tangible and will surely be apparent in every aspect of their new venture. “After moving to Coeur d' Alene, we believed an ice-skating rink, where all are welcomed, was the missing piece to this beautiful area,” they shared on their Facebook page. Above all, they’re excited to see what CDA on Ice will bring to the community they love.
Andrea says one of the best things about ice skating is that it appeals to nearly every demographic. Whether you’re experienced on the ice, a first-time skater, or somewhere in between, CDA on Ice is sure to brighten your fall and winter seasons with joyful family fun. Gather your loved ones and warm winter gear. See you on the ice!