how much does a skating rink owner make

Do Ice Rinks Make Money? Profit Insights

Before starting any business, it is wise to search the market and discover the scope of it. Searching the market will also help you find a potential target audience that will generate much profit. Like any other business, ice rinks are also the same; the question is, do ice rinks make money as much as their popularity?

The inclination toward sports played on ice has been increasing for a few decades. People love to play and watch ice hockey and figure skating. So, it is a good idea to open an ice rink in an area where you find a potential market for this business.

In this article, you will learn more about the profit made by ice rinks and the factors that influence the profit generated through ice rinks.

Startup Cost for an Ice Rink

Let’s start with the startup cost of an ice rink before going on to the profits. Opening an ice rink is challenging; you require quite a big budget, and ice rinks need much maintenance and regulation. Then spending money on accessories like seating facilities and locker rooms is another story.

A standard-size ice rink and complete package require an investment of $1 million to $3 million. From buying space to doing advertisements, you need this sum to work on average. 

Average Charging Prices for Ice Rinks

If you have ever been to any open skate ice rink facility, you would know that they charge $110 per person for open skating. You have to pay extra charges if you want skates or other accessories. Usually, the rent charge is around $100 per hour, and the ice rink depends on the rink size.

So, how much does a skating rink owner make? The general survey and observations show that the ice rink makes around $2.6 million annually

However, the figure is flexible; it can vary on the customer turnout at the rink, the facilities provided, and the locality of the rink. Ice rinks in tourist spots and amusement parks generate more than this. 

Here is the list of USA’s top ten popular ice rinks, public skating, and rental charges to give you an idea of daily profit.

RankIce RinkLocationPublic Skating FeeSkate Rental FeeAdditional Notes
1Rockefeller CenterNew York, NY$25 – $33$13Iconic rink, higher fees due to prime location
2Bryant Park Winter VillageNew York, NYFree (skate rental $21)$21Free admission, fees for skate rental
3Wollman RinkNew York, NY$12 – $19$10.50Lower fees, popular with families
4Millennium ParkChicago, ILFree (skate rental $16)$16Free admission, fees for skate rental
5The Rink at Park TavernAtlanta, GA$15 – $20$5Lower skate rental fee, popular in the South
6Boston Common Frog PondBoston, MA$6 – $18$12Varied pricing, scenic location
7Maggie Daley ParkChicago, ILFree (skate rental $16)$16Free admission, fees for skate rental
8Schenley Park Skating RinkPittsburgh, PA$4 – $5$3.75Affordable pricing, family-friendly atmosphere
9Campus Martius ParkDetroit, MI$10 – $15$5Popular in the Midwest, it offers seasonal events
10The Ice at CanalsideBuffalo, NY$6 – $8$4Affordable, part of a larger entertainment complex

Operational Costs and Revenue Streams

While running an ice rink, you might need to be made aware of several revenue-generating streams. Ice rinks provide different kinds of facilities for which they charge different amounts of money from their customers. 

It is safe to say that ice rinks have multi-profit income streams. Let’s delve into detail to see what kind of these charges are.

do ice rinks make money

Admission Fee

Public ice rink skating facilities have membership programs. If a person skates more often for practice or leisure, they can become a permanent member by charging a fixed amount at the start. 

These memberships include skating lessons, reduced hour fees, and access to the rink and its facilities like a refreshment arena, locker room, and restrooms. The membership scheme is fundamental in generating revenue for ice rinks.

Ice Time Rental

Now you know the cost charged for using a rink to different groups, including youth and adult hockey leagues, figure skating clubs, and private parties. These can be based on hours to a full day, but the cost will be charged according to the time. These kinds of events are also essential for generating extra profit. 

Concession Stands and Pro Shops

Usually, rinks have concession stands or refreshment stalls that offer snacks and beverages; also, there might be a facility to buy gear in some developed ice rink facilities. 

Now, these shops are either run by ice rink management or are given on rent to a third party. In both ways, income plays a part in the total revenue of an ice rink.

Lessons and Programs

Most ice rinks offer ice skating or figure skating lessons and ice hockey training sessions for beginners. Enrolling in such programs requires a certain amount of fee from individuals which also plays a part in the total income of the ice rink.

Events and Tournaments

Fully developed ice rinks, built according to the national standard, are often rented for organizing competitions at state, national, and international levels. These events draw more attention, generate revenue and do free marketing to attract more people.


By now, you know whether ice rinks make money or not. Yes, an ice rink can generate from $2.6 million to tens of millions annually. However, the profit is directly proportional to the budget spent with an accurate strategy. The ice rinks with advanced facilities and a good location will give more turnout than smaller rinks in remote locations. 

Let me know if this information helped you get an overall view of the ice rink profit generation.


Professional ice rinks are made by forming a base on harsh and insulated substances like concrete or sand gravel, followed by the thin laying of eaters frozen one by one. A robust refrigeration system is used to keep the rink frozen.

Ice rinks made of natural ice are more sustainable than those made with artificial ice. However, the energy consumption used to keep it frozen is the reason for environmental pollution.

The gas, Anhydrous ammonia, used in the refrigeration system is highly toxic and has a sharp smell. It keeps ice rinks frozen but is hazardous for many factors.

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