Street Style: what people wore to beat the cold at the opening weekend of the Bentway Skate Trail

Street Style: what people wore to beat the cold at the opening weekend of the Bentway Skate Trail

Most sane Torontonians stayed indoors this past weekend, as record-low temperatures dipped to almost -30. But the city’s most adventurous souls grabbed their skates and headed down to the new Bentway Skate Trail, an 220-metre-long path under the Gardiner Expressway near Fort York. The trail is one of the first steps in transforming 1.75 kilometres of unused space under the highway into a year-round public space to be used for special exhibitions, festivals and public art.

A formal ribbon-cutting ceremony kicked things off on Saturday morning:

Skate rentals were free during the opening weekend at this booth, housed in a Giant shipping container designed by Astound. A two-hour rental will cost $10 for adults:

Visitors got ready in the Lacing Lounge:

They also sipped on Strongbow ciders (warm, of course):

Skaters took the ice dressed in umpteen layers to keep warm. We asked some of them to tell us about what they wore on this frigid day.

Erin Sinclair

40, visual artist
“My outfit is warm. It’s Canadian. My hat is made of wool and is surprisingly toasty.”


Don Cranston and Wesley Cranston

58, asset management company chairman; 24, engineer
Don: “We went traditional and old school. We’re big-time Leafs fans, and the jerseys fit in with the weather right now.”


Chris Drew

35, land-use planner
“I’ve got three scarves on. The first from Ryerson, because I went to school there. My fiancée bought the next one from the Calgary Tower. The last one is just a smaller scarf to fit under the other layers.”


Shabiki Crane

32, early childhood educator
“I wanted something super-warm but with a lot of flexibility and movement. I used to figure skate when I was younger and, while I can’t really imagine squeezing into a skating dress anymore, this is pretty much what I always wore to skating: leggings and leg warmers.”


Fred Gallagher

71, IT worker
“I’ve had this Yeti costume for about three or four years. I’m pretty active—I like kiting and paddling—and I thought, with the Bentway opening, that’s where I wanted to be.”


Larry and David Blanco

35, engineer; 5
Larry: “We were told it was going to be very, very cold, so we’re actually wearing all our snowboarding stuff, including David’s helmet. The matching plaid wasn’t on purpose at all.”


Michael South

39, city employee
“I use William Davis Park by the lake a lot, and it’s always cold, so I knew it was going to be cold today. I layered up. I’ve got a little bit of Canadiana, a plaid shirt, under my jacket.”


Thais Tambosi and Leonardo Rodriguez

35, bank worker; 40, IT worker
Thais: “To deal with -30-degree weather, I put on lots of layers. Pink is one of my favourite colours.”
Leonardo: “This what I wear when it gets below -20. I have three layers on.”


Colin Burns

29, constituency assistant
“I’m mostly just bundled. A comfortable jacket over top and fingerless gloves to tie my skates.”


Nicole Pacampara, 29

29, social media coordinator for the Bentway
“Wully Outerwear, a Canadian company, helped us out by providing these toques, which are super-useful because it’s so cold out here.”