White Rock Skate Center closes after 43 years
By: Rachael Gerron, 10
Sunday, October 16th White Rock Skate Center opened its doors to the public for the last time. After 43 years, owner Chuck Conner decided to retire and sell the landmark building.
It was a very nostalgic day for the rink. The last limbo, the last race, the last time skating at white rock, a place full of so many memories for so many people including me. I've spent many birthdays, New Year’s Eve's and countless Friday nights there. It was very emotional to see it go.
When the clock finally hit 5 the DJ announced that it was time to leave the skate floor for last time. At that moment it sunk in. That would be the last time I would see the disco ball spinning, the last time I would smell the aroma of the plastic coated skate floor and hearing the laughter of skaters of all ages. I couldn't help but to cry when the closing song, "New York" by Frank Sinatra played. It was like the soundtrack to a great movie coming to an end. I looked over at the concessions and all the employees were also in tears.
The old skating rink has been a fixture in the East Dallas/Lake Highlands neighborhood since 1973. Mr. Conner's father sold one business to open a new one. He asked his kids if he should build a skating rink or a car wash, and of course Chuck and his siblings chose a roller rink. Chuck started out as a DJ during grad school and eventually became the owner in 2005 when his father passed away.
I saw Mr. Conner at the rink every time I went and in fact he was there every single day since he took over. He never missed a day for 39 years. Now he finally gets a break, for good.
Before we left we thanked him for all our memories. We were all in tears. We realized this was the last time we would see him and this place full of so many memories.
White Rock Skate Center will always be a special place to me and to everyone who skated there over the decades.