Things are about to get groovy in Rockefeller Center!
Starting this Friday, April 15, Rockefeller Center’s iconic ice rink will turn into a fabulously rockin’, ’80s-era roller skating rink that will be there all summer long. It’s the first time it’s happened since 1940, when the plaza briefly became a roller rink for the warmer seasons. And we got a sneak peek of what it looks like for its total transformation!
The exciting activation comes from Liberty Ross — the daughter of Ian “Flipper” Ross, who opened the legendary Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace in Los Angeles in 1979. A place where “punk rockers and disco queens could come together,” New York City is getting a taste of that nostalgic magic for six months of warm weather.
The beloved family-owned skate spot was only open for three years, but was known for its celebrity visitors (from Elton John to Prince to Cher) and high-energy nightlife (it was once called “Studio 54 on wheels,” telling you everything you need to know!).
And it will now be revived so New Yorkers can be introduced to “the venue and the joy of roller skating to a new generation.”
The actual roller rink will be a bit smaller than the ice rink, leaving more room for onlookers to watch the skaters or hang out and grab food. It’s all thanks to new renovations Tishman Speyer has been making to restore the plaza to its original architectural vision, with:
- The Rink Level serving as a grand entrance from the Plaza and Channel Gardens, allowing circulation through the entire Center on both street and Rink Level.
- Glass doors encircling The Rink, restoring the ability to easily walk in and out and view the skaters in the Plaza.
- The sunken plaza transforming into a gathering space with tables, chairs, and green spaces that allow the public to flow into Rockefeller Center’s shops and restaurants.
The rink will be officially open April 15 to October 31, and hours will be Monday-Wednesday: 10 a.m.–10 p.m.; Thursday-Friday: 10 a.m.–12 a.m.; Saturday: 8 a.m.–12 a.m.; and Sunday: 8 a.m.–10 p.m.
Tickets can already been reserved online here, starting at $20 for adults, plus $10 for skate rentals.
There will also be themed nights and special performances, plus an on-site store with roller skating merch, only sold at their store in the Channel Gardens! You can check out the DJ lineup on their Instagram page, starting with Will.i.am and Odalys on Friday night, and Big Bob & Misbehaviour on Saturday.