Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena Add to Favorites


Provide increased opportunity, education and inspiration to young people of Washington, DC and the surrounding area through ice skating and educational activities. We partner with public and private schools to help put over 2,500 kids on the ice annually free and/or subsidized with all equipment provided. The majority of our kids are from Wards 7 or 8 disadvantaged neighborhoods.

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Address: 3779 Ely Place, SE
Washington / DC, DC 20019
Email: rslomski@fdia.org
Phone Number: 202-584-5007
Fax: 202-584-5008
Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena (FFDIA) is a nonprofit organization established in 1996 to rescue the Fort Dupont Ice Rink in Southeast Washington, DC from closure. FFDIA revitalized the arena and now operates the facility, providing a traditionally underserved neighborhood with an NHL ­size ice rink, recreational and cultural activities, skating instruction and regular physical education programming for District schools. The Fort Dupont Ice Arena is the only public indoor ice arena located in Washington, DC and the only skating facility in the region that provides free skating programs to disadvantaged children. Over 2,500 DC area youth skate in our programs each year, many participating in ongoing lessons throughout the year. Each year over 1,000 children skate during school hours as a component of physical education classes, or during summer programming through partnerships with local schools and non-­profit organizations. In addition, over 300 children and youth participate in basic skating instruction on Saturdays. FFDIA also operates advanced skating instruction for youth; over 150 skaters participate in weekly synchronized skating, advanced figure skating, ice hockey, and/or speed skating instruction. KOI programs encourage children to achieve a more fitness ­oriented lifestyle while learning a new healthy activity. Experienced volunteer instructors teach the lessons in which skaters work 8 levels of basic skating curriculum. Instruction teaches students the techniques of recreational skating, builds self-­confidence, and improves overall fitness.
"Fort Dupont is a vital member of the community and has meant so much to so many throughout its existence. Both of my daughters are afforded the opportunity to learn to skate and compete. This would not have happened without Fort Dupont and its Learn to Skate Program. Skating has opened a world of opportunities for my daughters and countless others. Skating has taught my daughters the importance of perseverance, can do attitude and spirit and how to be gracious and be leaders. Skating affords them and many others the opportunity to compete and challenge themselves. By learning to skate you are literally learning every time you are on the ice because skating is like life you must be able to take a tumble every now and then and be able to get up and dust yourself off and try again. My oldest daughter is on one of the Synchronized teams and it continues to enhance her leadership skills and learn when to follow, the team teaches her how to perform under pressure, how to make personal sacrifices for the good of her team, how to be reliable, how to communicate non verbally exhibiting emotional intelligence and how to encourage people and how to handle a loss. All of these skills are important in life and my daughters are learning them at a very young age. Fort Dupont is a beacon of hope to many in a community where there aren't a plethora of positive things occurring." --Daivernee Garrett, Kids On Ice parent