Ringing in the New Year at the Oaks Park Roller Skating Rink

WATCH VIDEO OF THEM ROLLIN’ IN THE NEW YEAR | Here’s where hundreds of families – including those from outer East Portland and far beyond – went to celebrate New Year’s Eve …

Around the Oaks Park Roller Rink go people of all ages, as they celebrate New Year’s Eve.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

On New Year’s Eve, some people attended parties at clubs, others rang in the New Year with their church or social organization – still others spent a quiet evening at home, watching televised celebrations on December 31.

But, hundreds – 641 guests to be exact – made merry as the calendar turned at the Oaks Park Roller Skating Rink’s annual all-ages New Year’s Eve Skating Party that evening.

Some guests, like Alexandra Hagel from Gresham; Lilley Perkins from Vancouver, dress up for the New Year’s Eve roller skating party.

“This special event has been taking place at the Oaks Park Roller Rink for as long as I have been here, so 30+ years,” noted Oaks Park Association Marketing & Events Director Emily MacKay.

See how much fun they’re having at this unique New Year’s Eve celebration:

Actually, roller skating has been a popular family New Year’s Eve event throughout the country, for decades, MacKay informed.

Some skate with casual ease, others with an expression of focused determination, but all look to be having a great time.

The event featured all of the activities one would expect at a roller rink, including a DJ playing music and announcing special segments like “Couples Skate” with slower, romantic music, “Backwards Skate”, “the Hokey Pokey”, and the reopening the floor to “All Skate”.

Pouring Champaign for the midnight toast are Oaks Park staffers Daisy Wax and Sarah Rosen.

“We did add a new element this year: a ‘champagne toast’ at midnight for 122 of the adult guests who’d signed up to participate in advance,” she MacKay pointed out.

“It was such a hit that we’ll definitely make it an annual tradition as part of our new year festivities!” she predicted.

Wearing party hats, these guests honk in the New Year blowing noisemakers.

The staff heard wonderful feedback from this year’s guests, recall MacKay after the event.  “So many comments were about how fun and well-organized it was, how great the DJ was, how positive the energy in the building was, and how nice it was to spend time with the community, all wishing each other well in 2024.

“We had one gentleman who was up visiting from California and introduced himself as an avid skater who skates all over the region, and he said it was the absolute best rink he’d ever been to; as you can imagine we were delighted to hear it,” MacKay said.

M’chel Bauxal and Erik Jarman take a break for late-night dinner in the cafe.

While the amusement park is closed for the season, the Oaks Park Roller Rink continues to offer public skating sessions, and lesson. To find out more, see their website: CLICK HERE.

© 2024 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™

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