Baptist Health Systems announced on Friday that Christmas On Ice at Baptist Madison Campus will not take place this year.
"Christmas On Ice provided a wonderful opportunity for Baptist to give back to the families in our community," said Chris Anderson, President and CEO of Baptist Health Systems. "Having ice skating in Mississippi drew large crowds the first year we opened. Last year, however, there were twenty-one days when rain prevented the skating rink from opening. The majority of those rain days were on weekends, including Thanksgiving weekend, which significantly impacted attendance and income in 2013."
Anderson continued, "After much discussion with everyone involved we have determined that Baptist Health Systems should not make the financial commitment required to continue this event. One of Baptist's core values is stewardship. At Baptist, we define stewardship as using our resources and talents responsibly to optimize value for our patients. In this ever changing environment of healthcare reform and decreasing reimbursement for services rendered, we believe the dollars spent on Christmas On Ice can be better utilized maintaining the high standard care for which Baptist has received national recognition."
Before making the final decision to discontinue Christmas On Ice, Baptist Health Systems says efforts were made to obtain additional financial support from past sponsors and other businesses which participate in community events of this type.
All of these groups wanted to offer their support for this great family event but were unable to do so because of their own prior business commitments.
Baptist Health Systems released this statement:
"We want to thank the Christmas On Ice staff for all of their efforts over the past two years as they planned and implemented this event. We particularly want to thank Mayor Mary Hawkins for her help and support of this project. Finally, we want to thank everyone who came and enjoyed the holiday season with us at Christmas On Ice."