Sara Nurmela

WinterSkate at Landmark Plaza

You can find Sara Nurmela at the Wells Fargo WinterSkate rink nearly every weekday in the wintertime. Instead of staying indoors for lunch, Nurmela bundles up and heads out to the Landmark Plaza in downtown St. Paul to ice skate.
“The two months the rink is up makes for my favorite lunch breaks of the year,” remarked Nurmela, a Woodbury resident who works for the city of St. Paul. “Unless my schedule is too busy or the weather is too cold, I’m out there! I appreciate that I’ve met people from different companies downtown and become friends with them over the years. The Winter Skate staff is also fantastic, I feel like I’ve gotten to know them, too.”
“The scenery is beautiful!” Sara said. “Almost prettier at night with all the lights, but the urban landscape is also gorgeous on a sunny day.”


“The rink is great motivation for me to get outside and away from the office and my cubicle,” Nurmela said. “And even though coworkers pick on me for having rosy cheeks for the rest of the day, truthfully I’d rather be skating than going for a walk on my lunch break.”
The Green Tree team. Nurmela is  the one with her fist raised.


Nurmela plays on one of those corporate broomball teams, the Green Tree team. Seven years ago, one of the Green Tree Servicing team regulars asked her to play, and she’s been on the team ever since.
“Broomball is closely related to hockey—but is generally less expensive,” said Nurmela. “It’s a fun team sport that people of all different abilities and sporting backgrounds can be involved in. Having coed teams helps to make it fun, as well. Running on ice levels the playing field, which makes the game about passing and teamwork.”
She started playing broomball in college at Michigan Technological University in northern Michigan. A rink set up by the dorms meant that broomball was a popular activity nearly everyone was involved in — “almost a rite of passage for living in the dorms,” recalled Nurmela.
“Although broomball makes me miss hockey, I really appreciate being able to be involved in a team sport,” she said. Nurmela played on her college women’s hockey team, serving as captain her junior year and president of the club her senior year. For Nurmela, skating can be either leisurely or a good workout depending on how you feel that day.
REPRINTED with permission from REDCURRENT