NORWALK, Connecticut (WABC) -- An important community skating venue in Norwalk, Connecticut called "The Rinks at Veterans Park" has been vandalized and the damage has impacted the start of the ice skating season.
They would have made ice in not one but two rinks here and people would have been enjoying their skating had it not been for vandals and thieves.
"The damage is catastrophic, what they've done here, and is going to take weeks and weeks to repair, " says Dale DeRosa, General Manager of SoNo Ice House, which runs the community rinks.
Sometime after Oct. 10, thieves broke into the rinks and systematically cut 700 "U-bends" off the refrigeration lines.
To add further damage, they cut 600 brass fittings off the larger header lines - far more damage than the street value of the copper and brass.
"Not very educated thieves that came and saw copper and thought there was a value to what they were going to steal and not realizing they just did an enormous amount of damage to the facility," DeRosa said.
High school teams use the rinks starting in late November. Twelve-thousand younger students get free passes to skate the rinks and anyone in the community can enjoy other skate times.
"What were you thinking?" asked area resident Jay Cassidy. "Do you really need the money that bad that you would deprive a community of something that should be a lovely amenity."
New parts are expected to arrive on Tuesday.
Norwalk police are actively investigating the case.