July 25 – 30 – Blaine, MN
After a long summer of hard work, it was time for the skaters of the Franklin Park Ice Arena to travel to Blaine, Minnesota for the biggest competition of the year. The ISI World Recreational Team Championships are held each year in different parts of the country and welcome competitive skaters from around the world. Our rink was represented by 35 individual skaters competing in as many as 12 events each.
Coaches Joey Moore, Maggie Orchard and Skate School Director, Anne Raucci, traveled to Minnesota with the skaters where their first task was to attend meetings to discuss judging schedules and competition rules on Sunday.
The competition officially began on Monday with many events happening in multiple rinks. Staying on schedule was imperative to keep the competition running smoothly. The skaters competed in their solo events, along with spotlight and compulsory events. So many costumes and props traveled along with the skaters and it was great to see the variety of designs and color.
Competition continued throughout the week. Some days we competed until 9pm. On Friday, the rest of our team, the Starr Blades, along with Coaches Dina Domino, Alyssa Bernardo and Manager Laura Vacca came to get in a last minute practice before all the team events on Saturday.
Saturday was a busy day for us, we had 4 Production Numbers back to back and both Starr Blades teams performed. It was a crazy day, but so much fun! At the end of the competition, we ended up in 7th place out of 63 teams.
In addition to competing, our skaters and families took part in a team dinner, took a group trip to the Mall of America and got to attend the ISI Benefit Show featuring Olympic skaters, Gracie and Carly Gold. Franklin Park skaters Maggie Messamore, Jan Valtera and Hana Valterova had the honor of being chosen to perform in the show! The Gold sisters also held a meet and greet session after the show which was very exciting for the kids.
Taking part in this competition is a huge commitment and a culmination of great effort from skaters, parents, coaches and arena staff. We are very grateful to have formed the team that took part in this unique event.
On to next year! ….