Pittsburgh Grows "Hockey Town" Reputation with New Skating Rink


Photo obtained from NHL.com/Penguins

Pittsburgh’s reputation as a hockey town has continued to grow since the early 90’s when Mario Lemieux, Jaromir Jagr, and Ron Francis graced the ice of the Civic Arena and brought us two Stanley Cup championships.  It continued after the Pittsburgh Penguins added to their cup list in 2009, followed by back-to-back championships in 2016 and 2017.  

We as Pittsburghers have been lucky enough to have potentially three of the top five (Lemieux and Sidney Crosby for sure, and some would argue Jaromir Jagr) NHL players of all-time on our home team.  Well now, the Penguins are continuing to increase this reputation, and giving opportunities to Pittsburgh youth, with a brand new ice rink in Shadyside.

The Hunt Armory used to be an armory for the National Guard in Pittsburgh’s Shadyside community.  It will now feature the first public ice rink built in Pittsburgh in the last several decades.  Chief Operating Officer of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Kevin Acklin, said, “This will be the place where we create future stars for the NHL”, and that, “this is just the beginning of something we hope to continue for years to come.”

Additionally, the purpose of the rink is to help out those who have not had the opportunity or access to a public rink in the past.  It is well known that the diversity in professional hockey, and hockey of all levels, is the least among all major sports.  This rink is meant to break down some of those color and wealth barriers, and offer a place for youth of all backgrounds to experience ice skating and hockey. 

Also, as with any recreational facility, the more kids stay active in a structured community, the more they stay out of trouble.  Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto summed it up as saying, “A kid on cold ice is never in hot water.”  The ice rink will also be the new home for the Pittsburgh Inclusion Creates Equality group, known as Pittsburgh ICE, which is a program that is spearheaded by the Penguins to help youth in the city better connect with hockey. 

The 45,600-square foot facility will open to the public from November 26th through March 1st.  Public skating sessions will be held on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.  Tickets can be purchased in advanced online at the link here: https://www.nhl.com/penguins/community/hunt-armory-rink  Also, skates will be available to rent on site.  

The new rink will also be home to the Pittsburgh Warriors for veterans and the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Hockey leagues, plus classes to teach skating and hockey will be offered.