The Wilmington Ice House in Wilmington, NC
7201 Ogden Business Lane
Wilmington NC 28411
HockeyCat Rink Information
Amenities: The Wilmington Ice House is one of the nicest facilites in North Carolina. The Pro Shop may be one of the best stocked anywhere. The snack bar was very good and could provide for all but the most demanding customer. It was possible to see very well from inside allowing family members to stay warm while their brothers and sisters were on the ice.
Locker Rooms: The 4 player locker rooms were of a decent size and fairly easy to find. The Referee Locker Room was near the ice surface, but separate from the players area.
Seating: If you want to sit, there are bleachers at one end of the rink or you can sit in the snack bar. There are also bleachers along the wall that most people use for standing, but you can sit there just as well.
Ice: The Wilmington Ice House distinguishes itself from other rinks. You would never know you were at the beach. The ice was very good. I was there in the winter months, but the GM says he prides himself on his ice and it shows. I expect the quality to be very good throughout the year.
Cleanliness: The Wilmington Ice House facility is very well kept. I went there late in the day and early in the morning and everything was the same both times. The staff obviously takes pride in the facility. The snack bar had a very high NC Cleanliness rating and hot and cold water could be found in the bathrooms.
Pro Shop: The Wilmington Ice House Pro Shop is excellent. Given that they are practically the only game in town, they do everything from soup to nuts or should I say, figure skating to skate repairs. The Pro Shop folks are courteous and seem to know their stuff. They also go out of their way to help customers locate items if they cannot find them in their store. If you break a composite stick, you can probably find an exact replacement on site.
Overall: The Wilmington Ice House facility is perhaps the best Ice only rink in the State of NC. The building is well-designed; the ice is well-maintained; the pro shop is first rate and the GM is approachable and genuinely cares about building strong hockey programs. The partnership that put this rink together seems to have gotten it right. The Beach location makes it an unusual setting for hockey, but it also adds to the family appeal.
This is the first ever five paw facility I have had the pleasure to visit.
Directions: Good luck finding it. It is tucked away in a Business park, behind a park and a neighborhood. It is off Market Street North of what most people consider Wilmington. It is surprisingly close to shopping and other amenities.
From I-40E, take exit 420, Gordon Rd. At the stop sign at the bottom of the ramp, turn right on Gordon Rd. Follow Gordon Rd. approximately 2 miles to Market St. Turn left on Market St. and stay in the left hand lane. Turn left into Ogden Park, approximately 1/2 mile - There is a church and graveyard on the left as you come up from Gordon road that marks the entrance.
Once you have found your way wind around past the neighborhood. Turn right on Ogden Business Ln. and the rink is on your left.
Leagues : Men's - A, B and C and 35+
Youth - House, Travel
College - University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW)
HockeyCat Rating: 5 paws (out of 5)
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