As snow falls and temperatures sit below freezing, winter sports organizations and facilities across Cornell and the greater Ithaca area hope to engage Cornellians in cold-weather activities.
Julia Forte ’24 and Tory Watnick ’23, co-captains of the Cornell University Figure Skating Club, said they hope to involve the Cornell community in their events this semester. Although figure skaters practice the sport year-round, Forte recognized the sport’s increase in popularity amongst the general public during the winter.
“[For] figure skaters who are competing or do it as an actual sport, it’s definitely a year-round sport. I think it’s just a little bit of a misconception that it’s a winter sport,” Forte said. “But I think the general public just gets into it in the winter, because it’s such a fun thing to do, to skate outside, and that’s the only weather that permits that.”
Last semester, CUFSC hosted Lynahmation, a figure skating show during which skaters portrayed animated characters. The club also hosted a public skate night, where students could skate at Lynah Rink with the team.
Watnick said that CUFSC will put on another show this semester and hopes to host another skate night. Forte echoed Watnick’s sentiment, adding that she enjoys engaging the Cornell community in figure skating.
“I’d say it’s really great for us to have our campus involved — in the shows, in skate night,” Forte said.
Lynah Rink is open to the Cornell community for public skating as well, although the rink reduced its hours last semester due to lack of staffing. The rink will resume its Sunday public skating session this semester, which will take place from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Lynah Rink manager Phil Graham wrote in an email to The Sun.
In addition to ice skating, Cornellians can enjoy skiing this winter. Many students, such as Chris McDermott ’23, enjoy skiing at Greek Peak, one of the closest mountains to Cornell’s campus.
“I just got into skiing about a year ago, so I am looking forward to spending more time on the slopes this winter,” McDermott said. “I plan on sticking to Greek Peak since I have been before, and it is the most convenient for me at the moment.”
Jon Spaulding, Director of Marketing at Greek Peak, told The Sun in an email that Greek Peak aims to engage local university students in winter sports, citing Cornell’s skiing physical education course that takes place on the mountain.
“We have many different opportunities for college students in Tompkins County and all around the Central New York area,” Spaulding wrote. “We hope to see a lot more students visiting the mountain this year.”
To incentivize local university students to visit, Greek Peak offers discounts for college students on Monday nights.
“We are centrally located to so many colleges and universities in the Central New York area,” Spaulding wrote. “Local students are particularly important here.”