On Sunday, May 23rd, 2021 Peg Fredette and the Narragansett Chamber of Commerce had an opening celebration for our town’s new ice-skating rink. The celebration was “Grand with a capital G” in that it recognized all those who were involved in making the rink a reality for Narragansett. The sponsors and those who worked behind the scenes were all recognized. The goal for having the rink was realized when the rink was enjoyed by all attendees, families, and their children.
A special shout out is for Peg Fredette of the Narragansett Chamber for using the Take It Outside Rhode Island Grant monies to fund a portion of the rink. Peg also reached out to the community and the donations came in from individuals to businesses throughout South County and Rhode Island.
Peg worked with Steve Wright, director of Parks and Recreations to plan the rink. Steve and Peg then reached out to Rick Lema who has a background in construction from his dad’s boat building industry. Rick and Steve were instrumental in planning the design and reaching out to the contractors in designing the rink. It is our family’s hope a special commemorative plaque can be created to recognize these individuals.
Some of the workers who worked behind the scenes in constructing the rink were Tyler Hoxie and who works for Steve who was fabulous as was Joe Harvey who sledgehammered all those puzzle pieces in place.
There were many local businesses that set up their tables all who were corporate sponsors. Many of the businesses present gave away gifts to the attendees. Shirts, hats, and other gifts were given out to all who stopped by the booths. There was a ribbon cutting ceremony to commemorate the event. Even a drone was present to record some of the event’s activities. There were commemorative pins that were given out to the donors and a lancet with a colorful emblem of the Towers with the inscription Take it Outside, Narragansett Chamber of Commerce. The staff from the Chamber of Commerce was there to help with the festivities. A delicious lunch was provided to the donors. The entire staff of the Narragansett Chamber of Commerce need to be congratulated for all their support.
Our family would be forever grateful for the banner that was generated to honor my dad, Albert Alba Sr. The banner read, “In Loving Memory of Al Alba, Sr. and his tireless dream of a Community Ice Skating Rink.” My dad would attend the Narragansett Town Council meetings religiously and he would advocate for an ice-skating rink on many occasions. My dad loved skating and watching people skate. My dad found simple things most important in life such as spending time with family, as he would take us skating as young children, going to parks, taking walks along Ocean Road, loving family time at Narragansett’s Beautiful Beaches, and day trips throughout Rhode Island. As I was watching the children skate and having fun on the ice rink on Sunday, I know my dad was smiling up in Heaven.
Hours of operation are from 9 a.m. to dusk. People need to bring their own skates. Later, Parks and Recreation and the Town of Narragansett may consider skate rentals if a businessperson puts forth a feasible proposal. There is no cost to use the rink, and it will be open to the public and people skate at their own risk. The Rhode Show recently did a news segment on our rink as well.
The rink is still a work in progress and It is the hope that the rink will be expanded upon with future donations. The rink’s cement platform is designed to have additional sections added on as more money becomes available. Each additional “puzzle piece” of synthetic ice costs $4,000.
Thank you again to everyone involved in making the ice rink become a reality for Narragansett.
The Alba Family: Dr. Al Alba, Mrs. Rose Alba (Mr. Al Alba, Sr’s Wife), and Mrs. Ellamarie Alba McMullen (Daughter to Mr. Al Alba, Sr.)