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Outdoor Activities

Everything You Need to Know About Skating at the Emera Oval


Last updated: January 25, 2022

It's a local winter staple; a winter outing to the Halifax Common for a skate on the beloved Emera Oval, perhaps followed by stop in at one of the nearby local cafes for a hot chocolate and a bite to eat.

Of course, as with many long-standing traditions in the era of COVID-19, traditions must be adapted to ensure that our community stays healthy and safe. Fortunately for Halifax, the city's most popular outdoor skating destination has done just that; the Emera Oval is open for the season - complete with updated health and safety protocols. Read on to find out what's changed for 2022.

New COVID-19 Safety Measures

In consultation with public health, new COVID-19 safety measures for the Emera Oval include:

- proof of COVID-19 vaccination
- reduced ice capacity
- first-come-first-serve access
- mandatory masks in the building and on the ice
- paused skate and helmet rentals

Ice Capacity

This year, the Emera Oval will have a reduced capacity to follow current public health guidelines.

Effective Monday, December 27, the Emera Oval will be allowing a maximum capacity of 230 skaters per skate time. With this capacity, physical distancing may not always be possible, which is why non-medical masks will now be mandatory at all times, including on the ice surface.

Once reaching the capacity of 230 skaters, the Oval cannot allow more people in, even if some of the initial 230 leave. Otherwise, it would be exceeding its allowed capacity for that given skate time.

Staff will continue to work with public health to adjust protocols on an as-needed basis to ensure the safety of participants and staff. 

Ice Access

Ice access will be provided on a first-come-first-serve basis until the maximum capacity of 230 participants has been reached. 

How to register for a session with an instructor:
1. Online: Register online here
2. By Phone: Call 902-490-6666 anytime from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Sunday.

NOTE: Once registered, be sure to check the Emera Oval schedule online, as weather and ice conditions can cancel an open skate session.

Skate & Helmet Rentals

Equipment rentals, including skates and helmets, will not be available at this time, therefore, residents will be required to bring their own equipment. CSA-approved multi-impact hockey helmets are mandatory for children 12 years of age and under however, all skaters are encouraged to wear a helmet, for their own safety. Please note red skating helpers will not be available this season.


A reminder to skaters that as per the provincial public health order, non-medical face masks are required in all indoor public places, including hallways and washrooms.

Effective Monday, Dec. 27 non-medical masks are mandatory at all times, including on the ice surface. 

Emera Oval Info & Updates

For updates on the Emera Oval, residents can visit, or follow on Twitter at @hfxrec and @hfxgov.

Please note that there will not be any skating lessons, or other programming offered at the Oval this season.

Get out there, enjoy the winter weather, and stay safe!