Release Date: November 14, 2013

Ice Rink in National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden Opens November 15 with Free Hot Chocolate on Opening Weekend; Wide Range of Skating Classes Available for All Ages and Interests

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National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden Ice Rink

The 2013–2014 ice-skating season at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden will begin on November 15, 2013, and continue through March 16, 2014, weather permitting. Skating classes will be offered for different ages and abilities. Located on the National Mall between 7th and 9th Streets along Constitution Avenue NW, the ice rink is a favorite Washington destination, attracting thousands of visitors to skate in the nation’s capital. The rink is managed by Guest Services, Inc.

The experience of skating in the Sculpture Garden, surrounded by the grand architecture of national museums and monuments, is enhanced by views of splendid large-scale sculptures by modern and contemporary artists including Louise Bourgeois, Alexander Calder, Roy Lichtenstein, Roxy Paine, Tony Smith, and others from the Gallery’s renowned collection. This winter, visitors can enjoy a new sculpture recently installed in the Sculpture Garden: Robert Indiana’s AMOR (conceived 1998, executed 2006). A play on Indiana’s famous LOVE sculpture, AMOR is the artist’s first sculpture to enter the Gallery's collection, significantly advancing the holdings of monumental modern sculpture. It was given to the Gallery in May 2012 by Simon and Gillian Salama-Caro in memory of Ruth Klausner.

To celebrate the opening, visitors who purchase time on the ice on November 16 and 17 will receive a coupon for a complimentary cup of hot chocolate from the Pavilion Café on those dates.

Ice Rink Hours and Fees

The hours for the skating rink are as follows:

Monday–Thursday 10:00, a.m.–9:00 p.m.

Friday and Saturday 10:00, a.m.–11:00 p.m.

Sunday 11:00. a.m.–9:00 p.m.

During the evening, when the Gallery and Sculpture Garden are closed to the public, access to the ice rink is restricted to the entrances at Constitution Avenue and Madison Drive near 9th Street.

The skating fees for a two-hour session (beginning on the hour) are as follows:

$8 for adults

$7 for skaters age 50 and over, children age 12 and under, or students with a valid school ID

Please call the ice rink office at (202) 216-9397 for additional information. The Gallery and Sculpture Garden are closed on December 25 and January 1.

The skate rental fee is $3 (ID required as a deposit), and lockers are available for $0.50 ($5 deposit required). Season passes are available for $195.

Skating Lessons and Registration

This year Guest Services is offering skating lessons for all ages through the Skate with U.S. program designed by the U.S. Figure Skating Association:

Snowplow Sam and Mom/Dad and Me: Classes introduce children as young as three to skating while holding a parent’s hand.

Children’s Classes: Classes for children with more skating experience who no longer need the assistance of an adult, are comfortable on the ice, and are ready to learn to skate backward and to glide on one foot.

Adult Basic Group Lessons: Teens and adults have many opportunities to hone their skating skills with Adult Basic group lessons, organized according to four levels of experience.

Sculpturise and Ice Theater: For skaters inspired by the monuments and sculptures surrounding the rink, the Sculpturise exercise class or Ice Theater artistry performance class provide a wonderful creative outlet.

Hockey: Hockey skating classes for children and adults.

Skaters seeking one-on-one attention may make an appointment for a private lesson. Special group rates are also available for parties of 10 or more.

Registration for group classes will be held on November 13, 2013, 2:30–4:00 p.m.; December 24, 2013, noon–1:00 p.m.; and January 2, 2014, 5:30–6:00 p.m., at the entrance of the Pavilion Café. To register in advance or arrange for a private lesson, please e-mail ngaicerink@guestservices.com.

Pavilion Café

The café has panoramic views of the Sculpture Garden from its floor-to-ceiling picture windows. Visitors may enjoy the recently installed interior sound system while dining indoors. The menu features freshly made dishes such as soups, salads, sandwiches, pizzas, and gourmet tarts. Beverages include coffee, tea, hot chocolate, wine, and beer. A children’s menu for ages 12 and under is also available. Managed by Guest Services Inc., the café seats 98 people inside and 64 people outside on its north and south terraces. Hours for the Pavilion Café during the skating season are Monday–Thursday, 10:00 a.m.–7:00 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.; and Sunday, 11:00 a.m.–7:00 p.m.

For general information and announcements about openings and closings, call (202) 216-9397 or visit Guest Services’ website, www.pavilioncafe.com. More details are available at www.nga.gov/skating.

Sculpture Garden and Ice Rink

The skating surface, which measures approximately 135 feet long and 90 feet wide, can accommodate more than 200 skaters at a time. A state-of-the-art music system delights skaters, diners, and spectators without distracting other visitors to the Sculpture Garden. At night, lights encircling the rink illuminate the ice, contributing to the festive atmosphere and the skating experience. Sixteen banners that surround the ice-skating rink represent a cross-section of spectacular portraits from the Gallery’s collection, on display in the East and West Buildings. Designed to offer year-round enjoyment to the public in one of the preeminent locations on the National Mall, the 6.1-acre National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden opened on May 23,

1999. The richly landscaped setting provides a distinctive backdrop for works of post–World War II sculpture by internationally famous artists. Visitors may enjoy spacious seating and walking areas amid the native American canopy and flowering trees, shrubs, ground covers, and perennials. In the summer, the majestic fountain at the center of the garden gives visitors a chance to rest and reflect on the works on view, or to enjoy one of the popular Friday evening Jazz in the Garden concerts. In the winter, the fountain transforms into an ice rink.

The National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden was given to the nation by The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation.

The Sculpture Garden is located on the National Mall between 7th and 9th Streets along Constitution Avenue NW, in the block adjacent to the West Building of the Gallery. There are six public entrances to the Sculpture Garden, from four corners and at two sides; and the area is accessible to visitors with disabilities. Admission is free. More information is available at www.nga.gov/exhibitions/sculptureinfo.htm.

Groups and Tours at the Sculpture Garden and in the Gallery

To arrange a special guided tour of the Gallery’s permanent collection for 20 or more adults before or after a visit to the ice rink during regular Gallery hours, call (202) 842-6247 at least three weeks (or up to four months) in advance. Information about other Gallery programs, exhibitions, restaurants, and shops, is available at (202) 737-4215 or www.nga.gov.

 

General Information

The National Gallery of Art and its Sculpture Garden are at all times free to the public. They are located on the National Mall between 3rd and 9th Streets at Constitution Avenue NW, and are open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The Gallery is closed on December 25 and January 1. With the exception of the atrium and library, the galleries in the East Building will remain closed for approximately three years for Master Facilities Plan and renovations. For specific updates on gallery closings, visit http://www.nga.gov/content/ngaweb/Collection/modern-art-during-renovation.html.

For information call (202) 737-4215 or the Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) at (202) 842-6176, or visit the Gallery's Web site at www.nga.gov. Follow the Gallery on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NationalGalleryofArt and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ngadc.

Visitors will be asked to present all carried items for inspection upon entering. Checkrooms are free of charge and located at each entrance. Luggage and other oversized bags must be presented at the 4th Street entrances to the East or West Building to permit x-ray screening and must be deposited in the checkrooms at those entrances. For the safety of visitors and the works of art, nothing may be carried into the Gallery on a visitor's back. Any bag or other items that cannot be carried reasonably and safely in some other manner must be left in the checkrooms. Items larger than 17 by 26 inches cannot be accepted by the Gallery or its checkrooms.

For additional press information please call or send inquiries to:

Press Office
National Gallery of Art
2000B South Club Drive
Landover, MD 20785
phone: (202) 842-6353
e-mail: pressinfo@nga.gov

Deborah Ziska
Chief of Press and Public Information
(202) 842-6353
ds-ziska@nga.gov

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Miriam Grotte
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Chief Press Officer
Deborah Ziska
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(202) 842-6353