National Stadium Ice Rink National Stadium Ice Rink

live with a football fanatic whose second home is a stadium, and through preference I steer well clear. But when the National Stadium announced it would transform to an indoor ice rink, I was lured by the thought of experiencing that adrenaline rush footballers get when stepping onto the pitch. Getting tickets online proved challenging so I opted for purchasing in advance from a helpful lady at the stadium reception (adults zł. 10, kids zł. 6). As we pulled up in the free parking area for our 16:30 slot the adrenaline kicked in. There, towering over us in the dusk, with its patriotic flashing light display weaving around the structure, stood the impressive stadium. Fifty something steps later we were inside…

I had anticipated rather tight security, but with one flash of our tickets we were in the basement wrestling with helmets, gloves and trying to avoid slicing off body parts with our keenly sharpened blades. Everything else – and everyone else – was calm. People rented skates (zł. 10) and helmets (zł. 5) in an orderly and efficient manner the like of which I’ve never seen at Stegny.

We trudged toward the open expanse and for a moment its sheer vastness did evoke a buzz. But it was short lived as it became obvious only a third of it was an ice rink. The remaining area was dedicated to rollerblading/skateboarding, badminton and a café that, admittedly, served a pleasant hot chocolate. The rink was divided into two sections, one for toddlers and novices, the other for everyone else. Disco music played but was drowned out by the Polish chap with a microphone who amused himself by talking about peoples ‘freestyle’ and every 15 minutes got us to turn and skate the other way – thus causing plenty of pile ups.The large screen hanging above us mainly filmed the scantily dressed wannabe figure skaters. Our moment of fame came as I attempted a signature move and landed on my knees. After that I made a graceful lunge for the exit and then some nifty footwork toward the café. In all, it’s a bargain, an adventure and experience we won’t forget. (GBB)

Al. Poniatowskiego 1
Open until February 20th

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