Anybody like the idea of gliding on ice or slapping a hockey puck around, even in a winter town that doesn’t have a National Hockey League, for the second time since 2004-05?
A group called Grand Strand Ice Management is plotting for the means to bring an ice rink to the area, and everyone is welcome to weigh in with opinions and desires about such a possible project.
A survey posted at www.grandstrandicemanagement.com/intent-of-use-survey/ lets the public denote how they would make use of such a rink year round and what options they might desire. They might include figure skating/synchronized skating; public skating sessions; youth, school, college and adult hockey; and other sports such as curling and broomball.
Steve Elias Jr., who by day helps handle capital markets within BB&T, is general manager of Grand Strand Ice Management, with partners Wayne Fussaro, the chief financial officer, and Rick Lewis. He said the group began researching its quest in June 2011 and has met with officials from Coastal Carolina University, the owner of the former Pee Dee Pride minor-league professional team in Florence, and other companies to discuss prospects.
The U.S. Figure Skating Association having a conference this past May just north of Myrtle Beach also excited Elias, who noted the irony of scheduling that event in a locale without any place to ice skate.
The closest arenas for anyone to skate on ice are in Wilmington, N.C., North Charleston, Irmo and suburban Raleigh.
Elias said 13 high schools in South Carolina, including Wando in Mount Pleasant, have ice hockey teams, and 15 colleges across the Carolinas play the sport.
Before I moved to Myrtle Beach, that was one of the things I was going to leave behind, and as soon as I was in Myrtle Beach, I put it as my goal to bring an ice rink here, personally for my kids. ... I have a son who’s 12 and a daughter who’s 9. ... She does both figure skating and hockey, and he was just in hockey.