Over at DadCAMP we have a category for posts labeled “best day ever.” You can rest assured this entry will be added under that header over there.

The greatest gifts children can give are their “firsts.” The first solid food. The first smile. The first crawl. The first step. The first word. The first bike. You get the idea. For a Canadian dad and son, one of the greatest firsts happens with two strips of steel and some frozen water.

This weekend Zacharie took his first skate. He loved it. Didn’t want to come off the ice. I didn’t want to take a break. I was excited the moment we suggested it as an activity and wouldn’t stop talking about it after we left. The kid is hooked. There’s not much more that needs to be said other than it was the best day ever.

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Without the Olympics, this beautiful setting for this life milestone never would have happened. Robson Square used to be an outdoor rink every winter for people to use. Then the money ran dry and it sat vacantly.

As the Olympics come to Vancouver in February 2010, GE saw the opportunity to gain some goodwill from their sponsorship and funded the rink to be reopened as the GE Ice Plaza. Skating is free, rentals are $3 and it’s open from 9a – 9p every day.

Let’s hope it continues from 2011 and beyond so other dads and sons can experience their own best day ever.

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