Chelsea Williams, Executive Director
What inspired you to get involved with the GIF? I attended the Gloves Off Gala in February 2014 with my husband and was blown away by the energy and excitement that the emcee (Matt Kraska) and audience had for the 'Raise the Ice Barn' project. I had no idea that there were so many skaters in the Valley and that they were all trying to compete for space on ONE rink that was only open for seven months of the year. Growing up in MN it was a completely different picture (four year-round rinks within 3-miles of my house) and one I have learned to appreciate immensely. I remember leaving the Gala that night knowing I wanted to get involved somehow. Two months later there was a job opening and the rest is history!
How do you see the Ice Barn making a positive impact in our community? An ice arena isn’t just a building – it’s a place where community members gather. Where children bond with their parents, neighbors connect with neighbors and kids and adults alike discover the joy of learning a new skill or perfecting and old talent. The Ice Barn is going to be a central meeting space for Gallatin Valley residents and our broader Montana community for generations to come. Not to mention it will provide more opportunities for figure skaters, hockey players, curlers and be a boon to our local economy!
Any final thoughts? The GIF is incredibly fortunate to have the support of so many businesses and individuals in our community! It is because of them that we have been able to make progress and know that a second sheet of ice is within our reach. If you are interested in getting involved, please don't hesitate to get in touch. We love adding more people to our ice family!