Eastgate Town Centre Ice Skating Rink To Be Yanked

Tuesday, August 6, 2002

The operator of the ice skating rink at Eastgate Town Centre said she was told Monday night that the rink has been sold and will be removed next Monday.

"We're all devastated. There are a lot of tears," said Linda Pope, who has had the lease on the rink since last December.

She said she and two other instructors have a large contingent of skaters, including 35 who are scheduled to go to a competition in Gatlinburg soon. "Now we will have nowhere to practice," she said.

Ms. Pope, who is a Gold Medalist along with fellow teacher Deborah Cary Gibb, said, "We are asking that someone in Chattanooga come forward and provide us a rink. There are a lot of interested skaters as well as hockey players who would use it."

The Chattanooga Choo Choo at one time had an ice skating rink, and one was put in at Cricket Pavilion at Finley Stadium for several seasons.

The Eastgate rink has been the only one available for the past several years.

Ms. Pope said she was told by Eastgate manager Kathleen Freeman that the rink here has a leak that would cost $35,000 to repair. She said she was not told who the buyers were or the amount paid.

She said she was told that a group flew in to look at the rink "so I assume it will be moved a long way off."

She said she was told that a crew will arrive next week and will then dismantle the rink and truck it away from Chattanooga.

Jim Colbert, whose daughter, Katie, has been skating at Eastgate for three years, said his daughter "cried for hours" after getting the news. "She's very sad."

He said the closest rink is Kennesaw, Ga., and there is also one at Huntsville, Ala.

Mr. Colbert said some of the merchants at the center are upset about the closing, saying that many of their customers came from the skaters and their families.

"The owner of a Mexican restaurant said up to 40 percent of his customers were from the skaters," Mr. Colbert said.

He said Linda Pope "has orders for skating outfits in process. She's going to lose her shirt."

He said his daughter skates 40 hours a week at the Eastgate rink after starting the sport when she was seven.

Eastgate officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

The third teacher at the rink is Kirsten Ferriera.



Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: BECK, ALLEN FRANKLIN  727 E 11TH STREET CHATTANOOGA, 37403  Age at Arrest: 53 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga ASSAULT --- BRANHAM, MICHAEL LEBRON  3421 PERSIMMON LN CHATTANOOGA, 37406  Age at Arrest: 31 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County Booked for Previous Charges ... (click for more)

Prosecutor Says Brewer Was Driving 80 And Was High On Meth At Time Of Horrific Wreck At Ooltewah Exit; Defense Says There Is No Evidence Of Intoxication

A prosecutor on Monday told a Criminal Court jury from Nashville that Benjamin Scott Brewer was driving 80 mph, was high on meth and never hit his brakes when he caused an horrific wreck on June 25, 2015, at the Ooltewah exit of I-75. Crystle Carrion asked the jury to find Brewer guilty of six counts of vehicular homicide by intoxication, four counts of reckless aggravated assault, ... (click for more)

General Bell: This Government Shutdown Is Outrageous - And Response (2)

The day before yesterday two Army Apache Attack Helicopter pilots were killed in a crash during training at Fort Irwin, Ca.  The pilots and their unit were preparing for a future deployment to combat operations.    As a result of the government shutdown, none of the spouses or families of these pilots will receive a dime from the United States Government in immediate ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Making A Difference

It was about 50 years ago when the late writer Loren Eiseley penned an essay called “The Starfish Thrower” so it’s been one of my favorite stories for almost as long. It tells about a man who walks up to a young boy on a beach, this just after a strong storm had washed hundreds of helpless starfish onto the shore. The boy was picking up the stranded starfish and, one at a time, ... (click for more)

McCallie Bounces Back To Beat MBA, 56-42

It’s been a tough two-week stretch for coach John Shulman and his McCallie basketball team as they lost two games in a row after starting off the season with 17 straight wins. The Blue Tornado had a makeup game with Montgomery Bell Academy at McCallie Monday night and the home team got back on the winning track with a 56-42 victory. With the win, McCallie improves to 18-2 ... (click for more)

Ooltewah's Second-Half Rally Dumps East Ridge, 66-54

East Ridge launched an all-out 3-point blitz against Ooltewah on Monday night at Catherine Neely Gymnasium. The Owls, who trailed 2-0 before the game even started due to Cam Chambers’ technical foul because of dunking in warmups, weathered that storm. They whittled an 18-6 first-quarter deficit down to 27-23 at halftime. Ooltewah took its first lead at 31-30 on Kobe Smith’s ... (click for more)