Posted by: Dusan Hoferek
The Old Ottawa South community and The Ottawa Centre Minor Hockey Association (OCMHA) have been struggling to find a local, convenient and reasonably priced skate sharpening establishment over the last few years. The pandemic has exacerbated this as many of the local shops and smaller arena run shops have closed. From discussions with community members, an idea was born to launch a community owned and operated skate sharpening initiative, run by volunteers.
Following some preliminary research, The Sparx Commercial and/or the Sparx Pro skate sharpeners, along with the necessary accessories like grinding stones, edge checkers and honing stones, seem to be the logical fit to support this type of community project.
Our City Councillor, Shawn Menard, is keen to back the idea and suggested we use the Windsor Park Fieldhouse to set up the skate sharpener and its operation. This would capitalize on the building’s potential as a community space and allow for the creation of a central hub for skating in the community. There is support from existing Windsor Park rink volunteers to operate the equipment and, as always, more volunteers would be welcomed. An alternate location could be the OCMHA equipment room at Brewer Arena, which would allow the OCMHA to use its vast pool of volunteers and parents to operate the equipment. A nominal fee or donation for each sharpening would be expected to facilitate the upkeep of the equipment and required purchases of new grinding stones.
True to the spirit of the Old Ottawa South neighbourhood, there is always a willingness and desire to participate in and promote a strong sense of community. This initiative will further engage neighbours in what is already one of the most vibrant skating communities in the city. Thanks for your support in this community initiative…it is much appreciated!
To donate go to: www.gofund.me/22a58079 or go to www.gofundme.com and search for “Windsor Park and Ottawa Centre community.”
Dusan Hoferek is a Windsor Rink volunteer and hockey dad who lives in OOS.
Featured in the July-August 2022 OSCAR.