Cape Council approves neighborhood skating rink

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CAPE ELIZABETH — The Town Council unanimously approved the use of town-owned property on Columbus Road near the intersection of Mitchell Road for a hockey rink in the winter.

The request came from young Cape Elizabeth resident Ethan Gillespie of Columbus Road. He wrote a letter on Oct. 19 and delivered it to the neighborhood explaining his plan, with the help of his father Chris Gillepsie, to build a skating rink.

The rink will be constructed in December about 8 feet from the road. There will be an area for people to change in to their skates about 15 feet from the road and stakes will be used to support the wooden structure. Chris Gillepsie said the rink will be removed when the snow melts.

The proposal to build the 24-by48-foot rink received the support of many neighbors who attended the meeting.

Residents of the Columbus, Thrasher, Killdeer and Ann Arbor neighborhoods spoke in favor of the proposal.

 

Michael Hunter of 67 Columbus Road said technology, computers and gaming dictate so much of children’s lives that the rink is a healthy alternative. 

“This is good exercise and I am 100 percent for it,” he said.

Since the land is on public property the rink will be available to neighbors, guests and children in Cape Elizabeth.

Eric Olsen of 31 Killdeer Road said the rink was a wonderful idea and a learning opportunity for Ethan.

“I applaud him for not doing what a lot of kids would do at his age, and that is it is easier to ask forgiveness than permission,” he said. “We are here now to support him.”

The rink will be open between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.

Council chairwoman Anne Swift-Kayatta said the project shows good initiative and she too applauds Ethan for his hard work.

“It is great that the neighborhood can work together on this,” she said.

Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or aanderson@theforecaster.net

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