Cass Park Arena in Ithaca, NY, was built in 1972 when open air style was more typical; but over time there’s been an evolution and it is now one of few remaining in upstate New York. It is a four-season community resource that needs upgrades to be sustainable and successful. The proposed glass enclosure will feature dehumidified “conditioned” air, ventilation, insulation, adaptations for climate change, longer season for ice surface, and improved conditions for users 12 months per year.
The Ithaca Youth Bureau provides community access year round including hosting the Cass Park Summer Camp, roller derby and skating, and box lacrosse, when there isn't an ice surface (currently mid-Oct-mid-March). The ice season may expand by 2-6 weeks per year if there is sufficient demand. In addition to ice hockey practices and games coordinated by local youth and adult hockey programs and the Ithaca City School District, there’s public skating, skating lessons, and school PTA-sponsored ice skating.
Throughout the year it is a priority that the Arena and its programming are accessible to all with a fee structure that ensures equitable and inclusive access. The enclosure improves conditions for all.
One supporter shared: "I was a player in 1972 and I continue to play in Ithaca Adult Hockey Association, and finished my last year of coaching my son. Having participated for so long, I know it is a gathering place that builds community and teaches our children important life skills through play. The people who built Cass did something significant for our community that lasted and made a difference. Now it is our turn to ensure that Cass continues to make a difference."