A nonprofit organization dedicated to building an ice skating complex in Goleta announced Monday that it has received a major, multiyear grant commitment from the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians.
The tribe has pledged $225,000 toward the Ice in Paradise skating arena, slated for the Camino Real Marketplace and expected to open this fall.
The Greater Santa Barbara Ice Skating Association, which is the nonprofit organization and driving force behind the Ice in Paradise project, is in the midst of a fundraising campaign that includes naming-rights opportunities at the facility, according to a statement from the tribe.
With its $225,000 donation, the tribe’s name will appear on the arena’s main rink scoreboard.
Last fall, GSBISA announced it was planning to break ground on the facility after 11 years of fundraising.
The project has been in the works since 1997, when the Wynmark Company donated the property and the county approved the rink plans as part of the Camino Real Marketplace project.
Jennifer Ono of the Ice in Paradise campaign said the group is expecting the facility to open in September.
Since the groundbreaking, “the majority of the construction work has been excavation,” she said, in addition to sewer work, laying pipes and the like.
Ono said the prep work for the foundation of the building should be done by the end of this week, walls are expected to go up in mid-March and roofing on the building could be seen as early as April.
She said the donation from the Chumash is “really helping us get to where we need to be.”
The facility will have two rinks, one a National Hockey League-sized rink and a smaller rink with an array of programs, including ice hockey for all ages and adaptive ice sports for those with limited mobility.
Tribal Chairman Vincent Armenta said in a statement that the facility would expose members of the community to new activities and programs.
“This is a project that has been talked about for a long time, and we’re proud to be a part of it,” he said.
“This donation will help us to provide permanent public ice recreation serving youth, adults, students and families in our community and we thank the Chumash for their ‘amuyich’ (generosity),” GSBISA board president Kathy Mintzer said
Ono said the Ice in Paradise campaign is still looking for participants in its “Buy-a-Brick” program, which will allow donors to have their names inscribed in a brick that will be on display at the rink’s outdoor park area, as well as more contributors to step up for donations and various naming opportunities.
— Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.