Monday, November 16, 2009

On ice in San Francisco

Holiday shopping can be a real skate when you do it in downtown San Francisco near a seasonal ice rink. Now, San Francisco doesn't seem like a hotbed of ice skating action (unlike San Jose, which has its own ice hockey team), so you might be surprised to know that there are three super cool rinks near shopping meccas, all open now. And one local rink is home ice to Brian Boitano, four-time US National Champion, two-time World Champion, Olympic gold medalist, and full time nice guy (by all reports).

Boitano does his triple axels out at the city's Yerba Buena Ice Skating Center, and so can you. Set in an urban rooftop garden at Yerba Buena Garden downtown, the center offers ice skating all season long and the view of the city from the rink’s giant window wall is, well, pretty cool.

If you want a setting close to the scenery, and the gourmet gift shopping at the Ferry Building, try Justin Herman Plaza and the Embarcadero Center ice rink. This seasonal rink has returned to the waterfront annually for more than 20 years, and will be open to the public for just nine weeks.

And for cool shopping variety, then you can't do better than the Safeway Holiday Ice Rink in Union Square, surrounded by top shops and posh hotels. The rink is in its second year at Union Square and is also open just about nine weeks.

Details: Yerba Buena Ice Skating Center is at 750 Folsom St., open for public skating daily and there's a Children's Skating School for all levels, including Parent and Me classes. For more, visit The Embarcadero Center ice rink, at Justin Herman Plaza, is open Nov. 11, 2009-Jan. 3, 2010; for more visit Safeway Holiday Ice Rink in Union Square is open Nov. 11, 2009-Jan. 18, 2010; for more visit
PHOTO CREDIT: Yerba Buena Ice Skating Center

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COPYRIGHT Lora Finnegan 2008-2009

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