Think you can't enjoy the outdoors as the temperatures drop and snowflakes fly? Think again. Lace up your boots, zip up that coat and pull on some gloves before heading outside for these five fun activities.

Ice Skating at Howard Park

Howard Park in South Bend is home to a state-of-the-art 16,000-square foot ice trail and pond that weaves its way around an accessible playground and fire pits. There are also fun activities like broomball. We highly recommend making reservations in advance and planning to attend a specific session.

Session Schedule

  • Monday and Tuesday: 7:15 p.m. 
  • Wednesday and Thursday: 5 p.m. | 7:15 p.m. 
  • Friday: 11 a.m. (kids only) | 1:15 p.m. (kids only) | 5:45 p.m. | 8 p.m. 
  • Saturday: 11 a.m. | 1:15 p.m. | 3:30 p.m. | 5:45 p.m. | 8 p.m. 
  • Sunday: 11 a.m. | 1:15 p.m. | 3:30 p.m. | 5:45 p.m. 

Ice Skating at Merrifield Park

Winter means the crisp sound of skates meeting ice takes over at Merrifield Park in Mishawaka. Fridays are family nights, plus there are special hours during winter break.

Merrifield Rink Hours

Friday: 5-9 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: Noon-4 p.m. and 5-9 p.m.
Sensory Hour (every other Sunday): 11 a.m. to noon
Open daily during winter break with Saturday/Sunday hours.

Cross Country Skiing

One of the best ways to explore in the snow is on a pair of skis. And there are a few places to do it. 

St. Patrick's County Park

Trails open for skiing Dec. 26 and close March 13, snow conditions permitting. There are over six miles of groomed trails that take you all over the park. Hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays with ski rental available. 

Potato Creek State Park

Although there is no equipment rental at Potato Creek State Park, more than eight miles of trails are available to skiers when there's snow on the ground.


Don’t let a little snow keep you from taking to the trails. Snowshoeing is a great way to enjoy the splendor of winter at St. Patrick's County Park, where you can rent shoes and hit the trails that are specifically set aside for snowshoeing.

Trails are open for snow shoeing from 11 a.m to 4 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays from Dec. 26 to March 13 (snow conditions permitting).

RELATED CONTENT: 6 Places for a Winter Hike

Tubing Around The Bend

St. Patrick's County Park offers a popular tubing hill. Tubes are provided and there are supervisors at the hills to make sure everyone has a good time. No sleds or toboggans, just so you know. You can also book a private party and have the hill to yourself. Ferrettie/Baugo Creek County Park isn't offering public tubing for the 2021-22 season, although groups can reserve the tubing hill for one hour and up to 25 people.

Hills are open daily from Dec. 26 to Jan. 3 then weekends only Jan. 8 through March 6, snow conditions permitting. Hours are noon-5 p.m.

You can also find a tubing hill at George Wilson Park in Mishawaka. It's open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, weather permitting. Tubing is available at Potato Creek State Park as well.

RELATED CONTENT: A Serene Escape at Potato Creek State Park