Empire Skate Club of New York

Group Skates

The Empire Skate Club organizes a weekly night skate, weekend group skates in and around NYC and the surrounding tri-state area, and an annual multi-activity skate weekend.

Regular and irregular group skates and other special Empire events — as well as various non-Empire skate activities — are briefly described below, with links to further information. A list of scheduled activities is available on our calendar. Last minute impromptu skates and other late event updates may be posted on the Empire Skate Club Facebook page.

Empire Group Skates

Tuesday Night Skate

Experienced skaters are invited to join Empire's Tuesday Night Skate (TNS), which departs from Manhattan's Grand Army Plaza (Fifth Ave. at East 60th St.) every Tuesday at 8:00 p.m., year-round, weather permitting. TNS is a New York skating tradition and has been rolling since the late 1980s.

Weekend Skates

On most weekends, and occasionally twice per weekend, from spring through autumn, the Empire Skate Club organizes weekend group skates that explore the city. We may also skate in winter when the weather is fine. The pace and distance of our weekend skates vary. Most tours are moderately paced skates of somewhere between 12 and 20 miles and may involve a restaurant stop.

Announcements of weekend group skate meeting times and destinations will be posted on the calendar. Late updates due to inclement weather, etc., are usually posted on the Empire Facebook page.

Big Apple Roll

The Empire Skate Club's premier event each year is the Big Apple Roll, held the first weekend of August. This is a multi-day extravaganza of group skates, social events, clinics, and adventures exploring and experiencing New York City on skates. See the "BAR" website for detailed info.

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Other NYC Group Skate Opportunities

The following are not Empire-sponsored events, but you're likely to meet some of our members if you attend them.

Wednesday Night Skate

The city's largest (often > 200 skaters) regular group skate rolls out at 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday nights from early April through the end of October. They meet at the steps on the south side of Union Square Park, corner of Broadway and East 14th St. (map). Some WNS skaters may "unofficially" roll November through March depending on the weather.

WNS is a moderately paced skate, usually traveling about 12-15 miles over two hours, and finishing near Union Square at a skate-friendly establishment where skaters can socialize a bit longer with adult beverages. See WNS Facebook page for the latest updates.

Wednesday night skaters may meet outside the event's official season when the weather remains fair, and as the event got bigger after 2020, this has happened more often. Same meeting place and time as the official event; just no leaders and other organizers in WNS garb.

Group Cycling (+ Skating) Events

There are numerous group cycling events around the city, some meeting weekly and some monthly, including such rides as the Central Park and Prospect Park Moonlight Rides, Critical Mass, etc. Fifteen (or 20) years ago, when inline skating was more popular, skaters often participated in these events, but even today skaters may tag along. For a listing of what these events are, see the Time's Up! event listings.

Out-of-Town Skate Weekends

Akin to Empire's Big Apple Roll, other cities in the Eastern United States organize annual group skate weekends that many of our members attend. These include:

Some of the above links may lead to skate weekends from past years. Please e-mail our webmaster if you have an updated link to report.

If you are a New Yorker interested in attending one of these events and are looking for someone to share travel or hotel expenses, the Empire Facebook page may be the best place to start.

Big Apple Roll 2024 graphic

The Empire Skate Club's premier event each year is the Big Apple Roll (BAR), an exciting four-day extravaganza in early August of group skates, social events, and adventures exploring and experiencing New York City on skates.

BAR 2024 will officially commence with an Empire group skate on Thursday, Aug. 1, and continue through Sunday, Aug. 4. But come early and join the Tuesday Night Skate on July 30 or Wednesday Night Skate on July 31.

BAR 2017 finale group photo