Local family puts winter fun on ice

BIG RAPIDS – When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life gives you a long, cold winter, make an igloo and an ice rink.

For the past 10 years, Kelly Cushway has created an ice skating rink on his property for his children to enjoy with their friends.

“It’s a lot of work,” Cushway said. “I start in early November. I drive around in a car and drive the frost into the ground, because this is just sandy gravel. Then we flood it with a hose about 10 times.”

Figuring out the best way to create the rink, which is about 110 feet long and 190 feet wide, has been a trial and error process.

“I’ve found that the best thing is just to drive and drive and drive, pack everything down, and then flood it,” he said. “You have to flood it slow; otherwise it will melt what you have driven into the ground frost-wise.”

Cushway’s 15-year-old daughter, Kiara, built a large igloo in the family’s front yard as well, taking advantage of the amount of snow that has accumulated this winter.

“We have 6-gallon pails and I filled them up with snow and stacked them,” Kiara said, explaining how she built the igloo much like one builds a sandcastle.

The igloo took a few days to make, but has become a fun place to chill before and after hitting the ice.

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Posted by Miranda Roberts

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