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photoWho’s who at the Winthrop Ice and Sports Rink. Front row: Laurie Ulmer, on left, who is leading the community fund drive, stands next to her sister, Jill Calvert, WISR board president. Back row, left to right: Rick Mills, finance guru; Marc Robertson, vice president and founder of the ice rink dream, and Kurt Meacham, rink general manager. All five are on the WISR board. Photo by Karen West

Reliable Ice
Rink fundraising begins

Under the slogan “Guaranteed ice. Wouldn’t it be nice?” a drive to raise $312,000 in matching funds to refrigerate and upgrade the non-profit Winthrop Ice and Sports Rink is kicking off on Christmas Day, according to Laurie Ulmer, chair of the fundraising committee.

The rink board needs to raise private money to match a $497,000 grant it received in May from the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office, Ulmer said. Of the total needed, about $70,000 will come through in-kind contributions. And $115,000 from a bequest by the late Red McComb will be put toward the project.

The goal is to have a refrigerated ice rink completed by November 2015, according to Jill Calvert, WISR board president. There also is a plan to add dressing rooms and bathrooms for visiting hockey teams to the existing building. The rink already is National Hockey League regulation size, but the ice is weather-dependent.

In addition to the community fund drive, board members Marc Robertson and Rick Mills are “researching other rinks and finding an ice-rink specialist [who can] design a rink for our environment and create a spec sheet” that can go out to bid by November 2014, Calvert said. Construction is expected to start in May 2015.

But the most immediate goal is a successful fund drive.

photoThe plan includes an addition to the existing building at the ice rink. CLICK TO SEE FULL SITE PLAN

By Christmas Day rink supporters will be able to make tax-deductible donations to the Rink Refrigeration Project via credit card or Paypal through the WISR website,, Ulmer said. Checks can be mailed to WISR, PO Box 1262, Winthrop, WA 98856.

“Any and all contributions are welcome,” Ulmer said.

For more information contact Ulmer at


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