Life's a beach at the ice skating rink
An ice-cool Nelson experience has opened as the city basked in a hot early summer weekend.
A temporary outdoor ice-skating rink opened at Tahunanui Reserve on Saturday, bringing a touch of northern Christmas to the beachside suburb.
The 35 metre by 15m rink, operated by Ice World New Zealand, will be open to the public daily (except Christmas Day) from 9am to 10pm until January 20.
The rink is protected by a marquee and has a 3m Christmas tree in the middle.
Ice World NZ also has set up a portable rink in Tauranga.
The Stack family, of Nelson, were among those that checked out the rink.
Robert Stack, pushed his son around on a plastic seal.
He said the rink was great fun and he had only been ice skating once before, 20 years ago.
"It's really weird," he said of ice-skating in Tahunanui. "But it's great. These seals are great, it's the only thing keeping me standing."
Nelsonian Christine Pol, who used to skate competitively in Auckland, said the rink was a great chance to pull out her ice-skates and find out whether she could still pull off some of her old moves on the ice.
She could and said she would be back to the rink for sure.
The Currie family, of Tasman, Alastair, Deborah, Theresa, 8, Renee, 11, and Pamela, 12, also enjoyed their outing to the ice.
"It's weird to go from here to the beach," Mrs Currie said.
Twin brothers Lachlan and Henry Purvis, 13, of Auckland, said it was "really cool" partly because there were so few people at it on Saturday morning.
"I like ice because you can't stop," Lachlan said.
The $240,000 temporary ice rink and $1.4 million worth of portable infrastructure, such as roofing and food and drink stalls, at the beach domain over Christmas and New Year has been brought to Nelson by Christchurch events company Douglas Webber Group.
The proposal has been criticised by some people because of the amount of energy it needs.
Director Gareth Webber has previously said the energy needed to freeze 550 cubic metres of ice was parallel to running a small city block.
Mr Webber said the system behind the rinks was the "most environmentally friendly ice rink systems in the world". He said Ice World dealers regularly attended courses in the Netherlands about how to prepare the ice optimally and maintain the rink to the most energy efficient manner.
The Nelson Mail