Sports

'Beach Blades' hits the ice at MSA Arena

Shauna Proke, a coach with the Abbotsford Skating Club, puts young figure skaters through their paces at MSA Arena as they prepare for their annual ice show, which runs Saturday. - Dan Kinvig
Shauna Proke, a coach with the Abbotsford Skating Club, puts young figure skaters through their paces at MSA Arena as they prepare for their annual ice show, which runs Saturday.
— image credit: Dan Kinvig

Figure skater Jessica Quiring is just 11 years old, but she might have a future in sales.

Asked what spectators can expect from Beach Blades, the Abbotsford Skating Club’s annual ice show which runs Saturday at MSA Arena, she offered a compelling pitch.

“The little skaters are fun to watch,” she said. “And your mouth hangs open in awe at what the older skaters can do on two thin blades.”

Most movies don’t have taglines that good.

As its title suggests, this year’s show has a beach theme, with music, costumes and backdrop meant to evoke the sights and sounds of the beach. Quiring, for instance, is skating to Surfin’ U.S.A. by the Beach Boys, while wearing a bathing suit-inspired outfit.

The show will feature group and solo performances from a wide variety of athletes – from three-year-olds in the CanSkate program, to the top competitive skaters in the club.

Other years, co-directors Stacy Geddes and Tammi Kerr have brought in an elite provincial-level figure skater as a guest performer, but they’re not going that route this time around because they believe there’s more than enough talent in the local club.

Geddes described the show as “Disney on Ice, but on a much smaller scale,” and said that participation is a thrill for all of the skaters, no matter the experience level.

"During the year, (the competitive skaters) are training on their own as individuals," she said. "But for this, they come together and do group numbers, which they never get to do outside of this one week. It's a lot of fun for the kids, because they don't usually get that camaraderie on the ice.

"For the young kids, they feel like they're in the Olympics. It's the highlight of their year."

Beach Blades has two Saturday showtimes – 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at MSA Arena. Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for students and seniors, and kids three and under are free. For more information, visit abbotsfordskatingclub.org.

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