Families and friends to enjoy traditional ice skating experience starting Nov. 17
SAN JOSE – San Jose Downtown Ice opens Nov. 17 for families from throughout the Bay Area who have made ice skating at the iconic rink a holiday tradition.
“This is Downtown Ice’s 26th season since its debut in 1994,” said Alex Stettinski, CEO of event partner San Jose Downtown Association. “Children whose parents took them to skate downtown years ago are now moms and dads bringing their kids to enjoy our rink and all that downtown San Jose has to offer during the holidays.”
The circular rink located in and around the Circle of Palms plaza at 120 S Market St. will be open daily through Jan. 15. Ninety-minute sessions will occur every two hours. Tickets can be purchased online at sjdowntownice.com.
Special Ice, the largest operator of seasonal outdoor rinks in California, will produce this year’s skating experience.
“Downtown Ice is an iconic event that leaves a lasting impression,” said Emery Lykins, president of Special Ice. “We’re excited to be a part of the rink’s history, to contribute to this amazing city and hopefully usher in a revitalized future for the rink.”
Downtown Ice organizers hope for a second consecutive season of local and out-of-town guests surpassing pre-pandemic levels of 2019. A recent report shows that the period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day is downtown San Jose’s busiest, with almost 20 percent of last year’s 2.8 million visitors to the center city spending several hours within a three-block radius of the ice rink.
Downtown Ice is nestled in the Circle of Palms plaza between the San Jose Museum of Art and the Signia by Hilton San Jose hotel. The rink will join the rejuvenated Christmas in the Park displays as well as the popular Winter Wonderland amusement rides in the center of downtown’s major seasonal attractions.
Adding to downtown San Jose’s vibrancy and appeal as a weekend destination during the season are stage performances including two versions of The Nutcracker, concerts, Sharks hockey, museums and galleries, restaurants and shopping. Visit sjdowntown.com for events and downtown details, and parksj.org for parking information.
Downtown Ice has exciting skating promotions planned this season including:
- Sunday Show Tunes, presented by Broadway San Jose, where skaters can vote for their favorite Broadway songs;
- Learn-to-Skate sessions;
- Family Skate packages;
- The Grinch will be at the rink from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Nov. 25 to greet skaters and promote Broadway San Jose’s Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas – The Musical in town Nov. 28-Dec. 3;
- The Ice Queens will entertain skaters Dec. 8 with a performance, meet-and-greet and photo opportunity;
- Signia by Hilton offers a Shopping and Champagne package for stays between Nov. 17 and Dec. 31 that includes two tickets to Downtown Ice; round-trip transportation with Lyft to Westfield Valley Fair; and a Bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne.
In addition, check sjdowntownice.com for a limited number of special $10 tickets for Opening Day Nov. 17 and the Grand Opening Celebration Nov. 20. On both days, skaters are encouraged to look their best or be in costume for possible social media and television news coverage. The Opening Celebration at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 20 features emcees Sandra Cervantes from Telemundo 48 and NBC Bay Area’s Mike Inouye.
San Jose Downtown Ice sponsors include Jay Paul Co., Kaiser Permanente, Creekside Socials, Adobe, Broadway San Jose, City of San Jose Environmental Services Department, San Jose Earthquakes, LS Power Grid, NBC Bay Area and Telemundo 48. The City of San Jose funds the event as well.
“It takes a lot of support and work behind the scenes to build and operate this rink, but it’s so worth it when you see the laughter of the kids and the joyful moments and memories shared by all the families,” said Lykens, whose business also has Northern California rinks this winter in Walnut Creek, San Ramon and Folsom.
San Jose Downtown Ice – Nov. 17, 2023-Jan. 15, 2024
Downtown Ice is a traditional seasonal event for families and friends who twirl and skate amid concentric circles of 32 palms, under a canopy of stars on an iconic skating rink in the heart of downtown San Jose’s biggest attractions.
Information and tickets: sjdowntownice.com.
Direct ticket link: sanjose.ticketspice.com/san-jose-downtown-ice-23-24
Hours: 90-minute sessions start every 2 hours: 11 a.m.; 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m., 7 p.m.
- Open 11 am – 9 pm from November 17 – December 15
- Open 11 am -11 pm from December 16 – January 1 (9 p.m. session added)
- Open 11 am – 9 pm from January 2 – January 15
Location: 120 S. Market St., Downtown San Jose – between the San Jose Museum of Art and Signia by Hilton San Jose
Opening Celebration: Monday, November 20; 5:30 p.m.