Ice Comes to Bondi This Winter

I like Bondi in the winter.

There are times you can walk along the promenade in winter and feel a wonderful sense of space being in Bondi, like you are of out town somewhere. It reminds me of times past when there wasn’t a constant flow of backpackers and tourists.

winter's day in Bondi, July 2010, view from South Bondi looking North

Last night I spent about an hour having a walk in the beach area.
Given it was a very cold night, there were very few people around.

This winter though, Bondi will be a bit busier than usual. Or at least, that is the intention…

From the 16th of July, until the 25th July, The Alpine Winter Festival is coming to Bondi Beach and bringing an ice-rink with it. As the Alpine Winter Festival website explains,

“The magnificent Bondi Beach Bergstation has been added as a third venue. What a spectacle it will be. The Alpine village will sit on the edge of Australia’s most famous beach and festival goers will enjoy the blue horizon from the ice or from the comfort of one of the cosy bars.”

Sounds like a nice little novelty idea to help businesses in Bondi during the winter period when the number of people who generally visit the area dies down. I’m sure the ice rink at the beach will entertain many a skater and “festival goer” and keep a bit of a buzz happening in Bondi during the winter.

I’m not certain if this Bondi Beach Bergstation is actually part of the Bondi Winter Magic Festival which made the front page of the Wentworth Courier three weeks ago. Not sure if they are the same festival or two separate events. Whatever the case, it’s clear that there’s a huge push to keep the Bondi economy ticking over when its not summertime.

I’m not really sure what I think about all this…I partly feel a little annoyed about yet another event that wants to keep Bondi on the map as the place where there’s always people and action, rather than just allowing her to have her usual little winter siesta from attention and entertainment. On the other hand, I appreciate that winter festival intiatives like this can help local Bondi businesses survive and cope with the quieter winter months, and that’s a good thing.

Sure, an ice-rink at Bondi in winter, with cosy bars sounds pretty cool (no pun intended) and could be fun but perhaps if Waverley Council also considered relaxing the onslaught of parking officers in Bondi during the winter time, businesses would benefit from people feeling that they could actually park their car in Bondi for an extended period of time and wander around.

I’m interested to see how successful the Bondi Beach Bergstation is and would love anyone who heads over to the Bondi ice rink this winter to write a comment here of their experiences and thoughts on the 2010 Winter Festival at Bondi.

3 comments

  1. stacey says:

    I’m with you on the parking malarkey –nothing like a brisk walk along the front, browse some shops and head to a café for a hot chocolate… minus the $20 + parking fee.

  2. reverendgroove says:

    I reckon I might go down & have a skate, I used to love roller & ice skating when I was a teenager. I haven’t done it since then (a long while ago) but apparently it’s like riding a bike….
    I like the idea of Bondi breaking away from the “fun in the sun” image. It has always been a tourist area to some degree, good luck to local businesses if they can survive through the winter months in this way

  3. bondimermaid says:

    Reverendgroove, if you do end up having a skate at the Bondi Bergstation, please come back here and share won’t you??

    bondimermaid :)

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