A recent influx of warm weather indefinitely delayed the opening of the Norris Ice Rink Tuesday.
Tuesday’s frigid 25 degrees Fahrenheit and wind-chill below 15 could not compensate for higher temperatures in the previous days and forecasts of temperatures above freezing to come.
“Since it’s supposed to warm up later this week, we’re not terribly hopeful that [the rink] will be open by the weekend,” said Amy White, associate director of the Norris Center for Event Management.
December 2011 was the 15th warmest in the history of Chicago, according to an article in the Chicago suburban newspaper the Daily Herald, open-endedly setting back plans for opening the rink. Data from earlier years shows that balmy temperatures in early winter do not necessarily predict a warm winter season.
The Norris Ice Rink, reinstated for its second year, is not refrigerated. It relies solely on consistently cold weather for operation, which makes pinpointing the day when the rink will officially open impossible. When it is functional, Northwestern University Facilities will decide every morning if the conditions of the rink allow for skating that specific day.
“We’re hoping [to open the rink] as soon as possible,” White said. “[Tuesday] was really helpful – and cold.”