Bumper cars on ice are coming to Philly

It’s still not known exactly where the rink will pop up.

Bumper car rink in at the Ice Zoo in Sydney, Australia

Bumper car rink in at the Ice Zoo in Sydney, Australia

Facebook / Bumper Cars on Ice

Picture yourself spinning and laughing as you careen across a smooth surface, howling as you smash into friends at high speed before zooming off and twirling away to do it all again.

That’s the promise of ice bumper cars, a winter entertainment trend that hasn’t quite reached Philadelphia — yet.

Australia-based “Bumper Cars on Ice,” a company that recently orchestrated pop-ups in Sydney and Melbourne, says it’s embarking on a North American tour and Philly is on the list.

A press release promises “life in the fast lane” with the zippy cars, which are surrounded by an inner tube-like buffer, are controlled via joystick and slide across ice on low-friction wheels. The attraction will also feature “a winter wonderland themed bar,” organizers said, featuring mulled wine and frozen winter cocktails.

Slight snag: the ice bumper car tour is slated to hit Philadelphia in May 2020. Yes, May.

That may be the beginning of cold weather down under, but (unless climate change pulls something really weird) it’s right when things start to warm up in this hemisphere. A spokesperson did confirm the projected Philly date.

Where will all this happen, exactly? Organizers said they’re in the “final stage” of securing a location, after which exact dates and prices should fall into place.

The skating-tubing-racecar mashup, which is promoted as appropriate for people of all ages, appears to have widespread appeal.

Colorado Springs has operated a dedicated rink for close to a decade, and it spawned a company that manufactures the vehicles for venues across the nation. Two years ago, folks running the Delaware State Fair rented a few, and the attraction was an immediate hit.

Later in 2017, Providence, R.I., bought 16 cars for regular use at the city’s ice rink, a development the mayor called “the most exciting thing we’ve done since I’ve been [in office],” and the trend blossomed from there. These days, the attraction can be found all over the country, from Jamestown, N.Y., to Tacoma, Wash. Prices range from $10 to $30 per person, depending on age, length of session and amenities.

When the Australian tour comes to North America this winter and spring, it’s also promising stops in Vancouver and Los Angeles (both February 2020).

If you’re curious and don’t want to wait, you can head out to Brick Township in Ocean County, N.J., where Ocean Hockey Supply currently hosts ice bumper car sessions every weekend.

Mornings are for coffee and local news

Billy Penn’s free morning newsletter gives you a daily roundup of the top Philly stories you need to start your day.

You finished another Billy Penn article — keep it up!

We hope you found it useful, fun, or maybe even both. If you want more stories like this, will you join us as a member today?

Nice to see you (instead of a paywall)

Billy Penn’s mission is to provide free, quality information to Philadelphians through our articles and daily newsletter. If you believe local journalism is key to a healthy community, join us!

Your donation brought this story to life

Billy Penn only exists because of supporters like you. If you find our work valuable, consider making a sustaining donation today.

Being informed looks good on you

Thanks for reading another article, made possible by members like you. Want to share BP with a friend?