Winter at The Bentway is back!

December 1, 2021

The Bentway welcomes back local neighbours and city-wide visitors for another winter of fun and skating! The Bentway Skate Trail’s 220-metre figure-eight loop will open for skating on December 22 with skate rentals, hot drinks, and special events. Alongside skating this year, The Bentway will also present a winter art exhibition by Inuvialuk artist Maureen Gruben.

“We are so pleased to be bringing back ice skating to The Bentway this winter,” says Dave Carey, Co-Executive Director. “Visitors are invited to a uniquely-urban experience of recreation, art, culture, and connection; a combination that is truly etched into The Bentway’s DNA.”

The Bentway’s 2021-2022 Winter Season will include:

  • Skating: No pre-registration required, just come on by during operating hours (see below for details)!
  • Skate rentals, skate sharpening, and hot drinks
  • Free Skate Nights: Free skate rentals every Thursday 5-9pm, courtesy of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. Free hot chocolate will also be provided courtesy of the Fort York-City Place BIA.
  • Winter art exhibition: Moving with Joy and Annivik by Maureen Gruben, supported by TD Bank Group and the Canada Council for the Arts.

Winter Art Exhibition

Inuvialuk Artist Maureen Gruben transforms the trail with Moving with Joy, a large-scale installation of sculptural sleds featuring photo and video of daily life while spring ice fishing in Husky Lakes. Sleds in the Arctic are created to move people from one place to another. Here, they facilitate a different kind of geographic connection by superimposing images from northern life onto downtown Toronto. 

A sister artwork inhabits the new Bentway Studio, located a block away at Canoe Landing Park, andshares photographs captured in the landfill of Gruben’s home community, Tuktoyaktuk (NWT). Anniviktranslated as ‘birthing place’, suggests endings are not disappearances but transitions; that leaving one place necessarily means entering another.

“TD is proud to support Bentway’s winter art exhibition featuring Inuvialuk Artist Maureen Gruben,” says Farah Kurji, Senior Manager, Philanthropy, TD Bank Group. ” Through the TD Ready Commitment, the Bank’s global corporate citizenship strategy, we are helping foster connection within the arts while amplifying contemporary, underrepresented and diverse voices across the broader arts and culture landscape.”

Moving with Joy will be available for viewing at The Bentway (250 Fort York Blvd) whenever the Skate Trail is open. Annivik will be open at the Bentway Studio (55 Fort York Blvd), Wednesday to Sunday, 12-7pm, excluding civic holidays.

Supporting our Neighbours

Winter can be hardest for Toronto’s most vulnerable residents. Visitors to The Bentway’s Skate Trail will be invited to “pay-it-forward” and donate towards the creation of Winter Care Kits for clients of Fred Victor’s Respite Centres nearby.

Hours of Operation

Skate Trail, Rentals, and Sharpening

  • 12:00-9:00pm: Holiday Season (December 22 – January 3), Weekends, PA Days, Civic Holidays
  • 5:00-9:00pm: Weekdays post-Holiday Season (January 4 – February 21)

Bar with non-alcoholic drinks and snacks

  • 12:00-9:00pm: Holiday Season (December 22 – January 3), Weekends, PA Days, Civic Holidays
  • 5:00-9:00pm: Thursday-Sunday, post-Holiday Season (January 4 – February 21)

Please note:

Depending on weather, The Bentway Skate Trail may need to close for maintenance or clean up. We work as quickly as possible to re-open the ice, and ask that you please check our website or social media (@thebentway) for updates.

Health and Safety

The COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing, as such, The Bentway will continue to assess the situation and adjust operations as necessary. Please stay up to date on all of the latest information on our website or on social @thebentway.

In an effort to ensure the safety of our staff and visitors The Bentway will also be abiding by all provincial regulations and additional safety measures, including:

  • Mandatory masks on The Bentway Skate Trail and in indoor spaces like washrooms
  • Increased sanitization protocols
  • Capacity limits on the washrooms and bar space
  • Fully vaccinated staff

Thank you to our supporters