Unterägeri, 23.11.2022

Ägeri on Ice

The winter event in the Ägeri Valley has been in full swing for a few days now. In view of the looming energy situation, this couldn’t simply be taken for granted. Those responsible are completely satisfied with the start, however.

Less is more – that could be the motto of this year's Ägeri on Ice in the Birkenwäldli in Unterägeri. The uncertain energy situation has prompted the Zug Sports managers to re-dimension the event somewhat. The temporary Winter Wonderland has now been open for a few days now: and the start has been successful, as Daniel Schär, President of Zug Sports, says:

"The interest of the population is great. There are many smiling faces, lots of exercise in the fresh air and a lot of fun."

The gratitude of the visitors is good to see for those responsible.

Ice skating, curling, magic lights and festivities: the organisers have remained true to their principles. The event, which has been a real magnet for visitors in the past, will run until 31 December. In seven weeks, the event in Unterägeri normally attracts around 25,000 people. But everything is a bit different this year, however. "There’s now a new small ice rink for children and the whole setup is much more open," explains Daniel Schärer.

50 to 60 % less energy
The threat of energy shortages also had an influence on this, whereby the organisation committee has managed to achieve energy savings of around 50% to 60%. For example, the new ice rink is equipped with sensors that continuously measure the outside temperature, ice temperature, humidity, solar radiation and glycol temperature. "On this basis, ice production is regulated automatically and it’s ensured that no energy is wasted," explains Daniel Schärer.

The small winter village invites you to linger and to skate on the ice
Ägeri on Ice in the Birkenwäldli in Unterägeri                      
Photos: Mathias Blattmann

In addition, the overall area is smaller and the number of seats has been reduced, and the chalet has not been included this year, while extensive Christmas lighting has also been  dispensed with. Due to this reduction of the infrastructure, a single heating system is sufficient.

"To be honest, we’re a bit ashamed that we didn't save energy with the same consistency earlier, and optimise Ägeri on Ice accordingly"

says  Daniel Schärer, and adds: "We’ve been able to turn a weakness into a strength." It is a lesson that’s been taken to heart.

Extension of the operation until the end of the year, thanks to sponsors
Although the reduction in energy usage is also based on the omission of individual elements, this has also an impact on the financing of the event. Daniel Schärer is confident, however: "If things continue as they are, we will break even." Thanks to the municipalities, sponsors and local partners, Ägeri on Ice can not only be open until 18 December, as initially planned, but until the end of the year.

This is now the tenth time that the temporary ice rink has been constructed. It all started with a crazy idea from a few people in Unterägeri. "Ägeri on Ice is and will remain an Ägeri event," says Daniel Schärer. Those responsible at Zug Sports have professionalised almost everything, partly because the requirements and demands have become higher. "Wherever possible, contracts are given to local partners, local businesses are given preference and local kids work in the rental service. Nothing works without Ägeri roots," he adds. This is also owed to the founding fathers, who did a great job.

Note: Further information about Ägeri on Ice, the opening hours and the events can be found on www.zug.sport