Was Councilor James Letterie just showing off (we’re just kidding, Jim) his knowledge of all things Larsen Rink and youth hockey at the special Town Council meeting Tuesday about enterprise funds in the town? Letterie, who is member of the Rink Committee, made the point that if Larsen Rink can be the first-class facility it was on the way to becoming (following a $1 million grant for renovations before the unfortunate setbacks at the rink for which the town has received a settlement of $348,000), then the rink can become a producer of revenue.
Of course, it needs some sprucing up, such as new locker rooms, and the construction of a concession stand would certainly help generate more profits for the rink and the hockey programs that use it. Letterie, a past Youth hockey president, also said a full-scale skate-sharpening venture would be a welcome addition to the facility.
Letterie is certainly on top of what is going on at the rink, noting that two leagues are likely to be using the facility and thus generating additional monies to keep the rink operating at a profit.
Letterie knows that the rink hasn’t had an extensive schedule for the past six years. The facility could be used for a summer hockey camp, for example (and how great would it be for Winthrop kids to attend a well-marketed camp featuring Ricky DiPietro, Mike Eruzione, Dale Dunbar, Chucky Sullivan and some of our current college players on the staff.) Our feeling is that the camp would attract hundreds of youth hockey players from throughout the area and perhaps turn a large profit for the town.
We’re not sure that the construction of a new rink is the answer. It’d be a tough sell to the town because of the competition for skaters and teams from Cronin Rink in Revere and Porazzo Rink in East Boston. So the goal is to make our rink the best it can be and allow people young and old to enjoy the benefits of having a rink in town.