Nile Rodgers-curated DiscOasis roller disco opened in Central Park
The DiscOasis opened at Central Park's Wollman Rink over the weekend, offering up retro summer vibes, sparking light, and good times in a pretty spectacular setting. It's billed as an "immersive roller disco experience" with Chic svengali Nile Rodgers serving as "Groovemaster," curating the music, welcoming guests, and wishing them good night via prerecorded messages. It's open daily from 10 AM - 4:30 PM and then from 5-10 PM every night.
If you want the full experience you'll definitely want to go at night, when the discoball-heavy set is lit up like Studio 54 (or Times Square) in 1979 with the whole rink glowing in a rainbow of neon and LEDs that has a little EDM rave influence as well. The center of the rink is where most of those lights emanate from, with platforms for staff dancers armed with glowing hula hoops, streamers and more. It's an impressive visual display, especially with the trees of Central Park behind it and the looming midtown skyscrapers beyond that.
At the back of the rink is the equally glittering DJ booth. While Nile Rodgers has set the tone -- and probably selected the day and night sessions' closing tunes, which feel like they're permanent -- they have actual DJs, including some special guest nights. Friday (6/17) had the legendary DJ Chuck Chillout spinning, mixing in disco classics alongside classic and modern hip hop, new wave, and even a little rock. His set included everything from De La Soul's "A Rollerskating Jam Called Saturdays" to the Bee-Gees to Fabolous / Nicki Minaj's "Doin' it Well" to Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" to Talking Heads' "Once in a Lifetime," all while hyping up the skaters on the mic.
Friday night's crowd was a mix of serious skaters, young and old, novices, and people like myself who hadn't strapped on skates since high school. There were also a lot of people who dressed for the occasion in very '70s roller disco style. In addition to the skating, DiscOasis has bar and lounge areas around the rink, and it was fun just to people watch and take in the sights and sounds.
The DiscOasis will be open through October 1. Hit their website for tickets and more information. Check out a few photos from Friday night as well as a video of Jimmy Fallon and Keke Palmer's visit below.
Before coming to Central Park, The DiscOasis debuted in L.A. last year.