SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. – A roller skating rink in the Spokane Valley will close next month after more than 42 years in business.
Colleen Bernstien’s husband and co-owner of the business, Ives Bernstien, said they would stay open until Sept. 1.
Ives Bernstien said his wife, Colleen Bernstien passed away and that the rink had always been her dream.
“This was my wife’s dream, and her business that she ran for all these years,” he explained. “And she’s not there anymore.”
Colleen’s parents built the rink in 1975. Eventually, they sold it to one of their sons, Colleen’s brother, and in the early 1990s, Colleen and Ives bought the rink from him.
The two moved from Tacoma where they been operating a roller rink that lost its lease to run the Roller Valley in the Inland Northwest.
When asked how the kids who frequent his business had changed over time, Ives Bernstien laughed.
“You see a change in society constantly, if you see a change in society you see a change in kids, don’t you?” he asked. “Are they still as rambunctious as they always were? You betcha, they’re always going to be kids.”
“Maybe it’s not quite as popular nowadays as it was in the 70s and 80s but there is a lot more for them to do nowadays,” he said.
He hoped people remembered the service the roller rink provided to the community.
“All the memories that these kids had, when they grew up in this place, that’s what we want people to remember it by,” he said. “All the dedication my wife put into the school system and the churches, that’s what the rink and my wife will be remembered by.”
“Everyone had a good time at roller rinks,” he laughed. “All the fond memories that they had, and I’m sure that any given person that grew up skating as a child will have all kinds of different stories but they’re all the same: fun, fun and fun.”
Bernstien said they would like to plan some sort of “grand finale” or big going away party sometime after the fair. He said they would like to get the whole family back into town for it.
The rink will close on Sept. 1, with hours until that day open 1-3 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, Friday 7-9 p.m. and Saturday 1-3 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. for $9 a person.