KINGSTON, R.I. – March 15, 2007 – The University of Rhode Island Police Department and the Boss Arena will host a student skate night March 27 from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Students can skate for free. URI Dining Services and Ronzio’s pizza will provide the refreshments.
At the event, the lights will be turned down low while music fills the Boss Arena. “Laughs, greetings and conversation fill the hallway voids as students form the line,” explained Officer Mark Chearino, co-creator of student skate night. “The event brings students together to socialize and have fun in an alcohol-free environment and allows officers and students to be in a more casual interactive atmosphere.”
The event also provides an opportunity to advertise the men’s and women’s club hockey teams. “We are attempting to encourage students to come out and see the teams play,” Chearino said. “We want to show the students that the Boss Arena is on campus and here for them to enjoy.”
Chearino and Joe Berardi, manager of the Boss Arena, came up with the idea for student skate night last year with the promise “if you get them here, we’ll get them skating.” With support from Fran Cohen, assistant vice-president of student affairs and dean of students, the first student skate night welcomed an impressive 350 students. The number of students rose to 540 at a second skate night,. This month, at the third skate night, they hope to do even better.
When it gets crowded, there is a delay waiting for the next available pair of skates. “The students are very understanding and wait patiently in line eating pizza, sharing stories, and meeting each other until it’s their turn to move up to the skate window for their size skates,” Chearino said. “Everyone gets the opportunity to skate.”