Minnesotans with backyard ice rinks may want to join a Canadian citizen science study - RinkWatch - aiming to gather climate data. According to an article in the Ottawa Citizen, a team of scientists, lead by Robert McLeman at Wilfrid Laurier University are working with over 1000 volunteers to gather observations about skating conditions on backyard rinks across Canada, the United States and other countries. They aim to pool data across sites to track changes in weather over the winter season. RinkWatch volunteers can also share tips for making their rinks, and photos of their sites.
RinkWatch is a great example of how science can become a productive part of our existing traditions and outdoor activities.
Visit the RinkWatch site to learn more about the program, explore participant observations, or sign-on.