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Where you’ll want to be Saturday: Rink-side sipping hot coco while your children let loose on the newly opened Reston Town Center Ice Skating Rink. The best part – it’s all in the name of charity.

By the end of the week the Pavilion will be transformed into a glistening Ice Skating Rink.  And in keeping with the longtime tradition, on opening weekend, Saturday, November 3 and Sunday, November 4, 50% of proceeds go to support Character Counts! Reston Coalition.

So lace up your skates, because we’re out to raise funds for one of the biggest character education programs in the nation. Character Counts! Reston Coalition directly impacts our local students with programs like Ethics Day for South Lakes High School seniors. This non-profit initiative is designed to help youngsters and adults develop and practice the six pillars of good character: Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility, Fairness, Caring, and Citizenship.

The wishes tossed into Mercury Fountain are donated regularly to Character Counts! Reston Coalition, but this weekend we want to mix philanthropy with fun while making a lasting impact on our children.  (Parents, this can also be a springboard into a conversation with your kids about why character counts and how to develop it!)

Excitement is high because installation of the rink has already begun with the glass dasher boards installed, but we are waiting for clearer weather to start up the underground chilling system and begin the flooding to transform the Pavilion floor into the spectacular ice rink! And don’t worry if you’re a little rusty on the ice, the Reston Town Center Skate Shop has any rentals or lessons you may need!

For those who would rather meet their Saturday morning cartoons than watch them, there’s a Saturday Morning Cartoon Skate 11am – 1pm. Also, don’t miss Friday Night Rock ‘n’ Skate every Friday night 8-11pm with a live DJ, games and prizes. There’s lots of fun to be had at the Ice Skating Rink, so bundle up and kick the season off with us this weekend!

* * * UPDATE * * * Due to last week’s SPECTACULAR weather, the ice skating rink opened on Sunday, October 31. Come out this Friday and Saturday, November 5 and 6 when 50% of all proceeds benefit “Character Counts!!

Reston Town Center’s Ice Skating Pavilion is scheduled to open for the season with a very special fundraiser and a long-standing tradition. Reston’s “Character Counts! Coalition” will receive 50% of proceeds from the skating rink’s opening days of Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30, 2010. The proceeds will help fund development programs offered by the Coalition, including the annual Essay and Poster Contest, and sponsorship of Ethics Day at South Lakes High School.The opening of the Ice Skating Pavilion is weather dependent, and the season officially starts on November 1.

Public skating, with skate rentals available, will be open daily, including holidays, until March 2011. For more information, call the skating hotline at 703-709-6300.

CHARACTER COUNTS! is a national, nonprofit, nonpartisan, character education initiative designed to help youngsters and adults develop and practice the basics of good character: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship. The Reston CHARACTER COUNTS! Coalition assists this effort by providing leadership, coordination, and resources to promote character development throughout the community. Coalition Members include the Reston Association, Reston Community Center, Reston Interfaith, Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce, Reston Citizens Association, YMCA of Reston, and the office Fairfax County Hunter Mill District Supervisor, CathyHudgins.

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