Three years after it melted down financially and scored new owners, the Ellenton Ice and Sports Complex is being groomed for a hasty sale. The I-75 eye grabber, best known for a colossal statue of a hockey player smashing through its side, hopes to collect sealed bids from around the world through July 23. Co-owners state Sen. Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton, and Sarasota businessman Marvin Kaplan snapped up the complex for more than $5-million as foreclosure property in 2005. The previous owners narrowly averted a power shutoff that would have turned the two Olympic-sized rinks to slush. The new owners stabilized the finances but realized they weren't cut out long-term for the hockey and figure skating business, Sarasota Realtor Diane Watry said. Bennett and Kaplan are spotlighting the development potential of the complex's 1,800 feet of interstate frontage and 9 vacant acres adjoining the 130-store Prime Outlets Ellenton. Buyers interested in the 112,500-square-foot complex, which comes with 562 parking spots, have to send a $200,000 cashier's check with their bids. Closing would occur within 45 days after sellers accept the contract.
Ellenton ice rink owners accepting sealed offers
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