Bannerman Park ice trail named ‘The Loop’

Daniel MacEachern
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

Bannerman Park wants to keep St. John’s in The Loop. The park foundation Thursday announced the name of the ice trail at Bannerman Park, 270 metres of refrigerated concrete that the foundation says will be open soon. Naming rights for the trail were given to Elinor Gill Ratcliffe, patron donor to the fundraising campaign for the Bannerman Park revitalization. She said she wanted an easy name for the children she hopes will flock to the trail to say.

Kevin Nolan, who spearheaded the fundraising campaign for the Bannerman Park revitalization, and Elinor Ratcliffe, patron donor to the campaign, stroll Thursday along the concrete of The Loop, the park’s ice trail that will soon be ready for recreational skating.  — Photo by Daniel MacEachern/The Telegram

Ratcliffe said when she was given naming rights to the facility, she asked the Bannerman Park Foundation for a list of suggestions. “I put it back to them. I said, why don’t you give me a list of suggestions, and let me pick? I knew that I wasn’t going to call it after an individual or a company, but … something that you see kids picking up their skates and saying, ‘Goodbye, Mom! I’m going to the …’” One of those suggestions — on a list that included “Skateland” and “Mobius” — was “The Loop,” said Ratcliffe, which “won the day.”

Ratcliffe said she didn’t want to name the ice trail after a person because it belongs to everybody. “To put a name on it somehow detracts from that,” she said.”

At a short news conference Thursday morning to announce the name, St. John’s Mayor Dennis O’Keefe said The Loop is a good choice. “If you come up with a long name, inevitably it’s going to be shortened to something. ‘Going to The Loop’ I’m sure will be echoed across the city for a long, long time to come,” he said, praising all the donors — many of which were listed by chief fundraiser Kevin Nolan — for their support of the project.

“It’s an example of what we can do when we work together, what we can do when we form partnerships that are based on having a terrific love and regard for this city, in particular for recreation and our parks.”

The 270 metres of The Loop are the result of a continuous concrete pour for 36 hours. An inch and a half under the surface is 16 kilometres of tubing in the refrigeration system that will form the artifical ice. Gord Tucker, the city’s manager of property management, said the refrigeration system could theoretically allow ice in weather up to 10 C. There will be seats and benches along the trail where people can put on their skates or rest, and the replica old-fashioned replica lampposts have speakers to play music.

A spokeswoman for the foundation said the City of St. John’s will announce when the Loop is open to the public, which she said will be soon.



Organizations: Bannerman Park Foundation

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page



Recent comments

  • Foghorn Leghorn
    December 13, 2013 - 10:14

    People .... relax it is only a skating park !

  • Darrell
    December 13, 2013 - 10:12

    What a nice additon to the city. Great job everyone and I can't wait to take my family for a skate on the loop. Absolutely love it.

  • mike
    December 13, 2013 - 09:50

    @ Heather Rose Russell. Get a grip for God sakes, how using the name The Loop mocking the Trinity Loop what an STUPID thing to say.

  • JJ
    December 13, 2013 - 09:21

    I believe the council is looped

  • Sally
    December 13, 2013 - 09:05

    I think this is a great idea. There's not a whole lot for the children to do during the winter months and it will bring life back to Bannerman Park where I spent alot of time as a child. Regardless of the name of the ice trail (which I have absolutely no problem with) I believe the benches, lights and music are a nice touch as well. Can't wait to see it!

  • Heather Rose Russell
    December 13, 2013 - 08:34

    As an ardent railway buff, I'm not sure how the name of the skating rink at Bannerman Park will sit with me and my fellow railfans. In September 2010, Hurricane Igor destroyed the Trinity Loop which was part of the Bonavista Branch railway line, the Government won't or can't come up with money to repair it and turn it back to the amusement park it was for 20 years, and here is the City of St. John's mocking us by calling this skating rink "The Loop." Please change the name.

    • PD
      December 13, 2013 - 16:56

      @Heather Rose Russell. Yes, you're absolutely right. The name was picked just to mock the Trinity Loop. Stop writing stupid things. Maybe it's named a "loop" because that's what it is! The name is perfect. Duh, some people!

  • Noel and Sandra Conway
    December 13, 2013 - 07:55

    Now we won't have to go to Ottawa to skate the canal....thanks to the "Loop" we will be looking forward to joining our many skating friends at the park. Thanks to all who have made this possible. Regards

  • paul
    December 13, 2013 - 07:45

    The Loop shouldn't have been used. We already have a Loop - the Irish Loop.