Yesterday evening, as freezing rain turned to ice on the streets of Central Wisconsin communities, many joked that the streets had turned into an ice rink. In LaCrosse, two teenagers turned the joke into a reality, skating through the streets as their dad, Bob Schmidt, filmed.
“I glanced out the front window about 4:00 yesterday afternoon and noticed that the street in front of my house was sheer ice,” said Schmidt. “I mentioned it to my son, Robert, who asked if he could go out and skate on it. I said, ‘Absolutely not.’”
Schmidt did agree to let Robert run around on the ice and filmed him falling over and sliding around. When Robert’s brother Zak arrived home, Zak grabbed his skates and the two boys hit the streets anyway.
Schmidt took a video of his sons skating on the street and posted it to Facebook. He also shared the story on his radio show, “BS with Bob Schmidt” on Today’s Talk 1490. By the next morning, more than 800,000 people had seen the video. The clip was even shown to a national audience on popular morning talk show “Good Morning America.”
“I’ve got friends from all over the country saying that they saw it,” he said. “It’s basically all over the country and the world now.”
Schmidt, who had never in his 48 years seen an ice storm quite like this one, said the video encapsulates a dream-turned-reality for many.
“I think that people are intrigued by the video because my kids are doing something that every other kid has thought about doing, but never has,” he said. “First of all, why would the streets ever be that icy? Then, parents always said ‘No, don’t do it.’ I said ‘no,’ too, but then I went with the flow. I figured we can always sharpen the skates.”
Growing up in the Twin Cities and a 24-year resident of LaCrosse, Schmidt said this was the worst ice storm he can remember. It’s now definitely one he and his sons won’t forget!
“My kids were pretty pumped last night, constantly giving us updates on how many people have seen the video,” he said. “A friend of mine said it was on the national news. Crazy.”