Downtown Racine Corp. is opening the ice rink at noon Monday since children are off school.

Free ice skate rentals will be available from noon until 4 p.m. on Monday at Monument Square. The rink will be open every day on Monument Square from 9 a.m. to 9 pm from January to March.

Ice skates will also be available to rent from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays. Rentals are free, but you must provide an I.D. as collateral.

The early opening of the rink comes just in time for the Fire and Ice Festival, which well be held Saturday Jan. 20. The event kicks off Downtown Racine’s restaurant week.

The festival will feature ice skating and a bonfire. Festival goers can enjoy some hot cocoa while they watch local ice carvers. DRC will also be collecting blankets for a blanket drive.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.