94th-floor Hancock ice rink opens in January

December 29, 2010 (RELEASE)

In direct response to the level of demand, the Chicago landmark launched online advance ticket sales earlier this month. The rink will be situated on the 94th floor overlooking The Magnificent Mile and a bustling Lake Shore Drive.

Since the initial announcement in September, the innovative rink has received worldwide press and Observatory staff members have received hundreds of calls to buy advanced tickets.

"We created the ability to book online to ensure we meet the demand, while making it a far easier process when you arrive onsite and eliminate wait times," said Daniel Thomas, general manager of the John Hancock Observatory. "As I said alongside Mayor Daley last week, Chicago is a city of firsts and we've received an overwhelmingly positive response to our unique concept. Chicagoans embrace winter and Skating in the Sky is a great enhancement to the Chicago Office of Tourism's world class seasonal programming."

The only way for people to secure the opportunity to skate 1,000 feet up in advance is online at www.hancockobservatory.com.

A 25-minute skating session is $5, plus standard John Hancock Observatory admission fee. Skaters are welcome to bring their own skates or can rent them from the Observatory for $1.

The rink will be open to the public from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. every day from January 1 through the end of March, and can also be booked for private events and parties.

Additionally, the John Hancock Observatory and the Chicago Blackhawks have teamed-up to offer free skating lessons every Monday afternoon, starting January 3.

"We're very excited to have the Blackhawks as partners -- they are such incredible ambassadors for the city, particularly through their youth hockey programs," Thomas said.

Observatory admission and skating fees will still apply, but coaches and "special guests" will be on-ice to offer skating tips at no additional charge.

Located inside the iconic John Hancock Center at 875 North Michigan Avenue, John Hancock Observatory is open every day from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. and stands in the heart of the Magnificent Mile next to hundreds of shops, restaurants, attractions and entertainment venues. Highlights include spectacular 360-degree views spanning 80 miles and four states, and the city's only open-air Sky Walk, all accessed by the fastest elevators in the country. John Hancock Center and John Hancock Observatory are owned and operated by affiliates of Golub & Company.

Learn the latest from Chicago's skies by becoming a fan of John Hancock Observatory on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hancockobservatory and following its updates on Twitter @aThousandFeetUp.

Copyright © 2023 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.