By Adam Brazeau
CORNWALL, Ontario – The spotlight will be on figure skating in Cornwall as the Benson Centre hosts the 2014 Eastern Ontario STARSkate Invitational Championships (EOSIC).
Skate Cornwall is ready for action.
Skate Cornwall (SC), a non-profit organization, will be taking the ice with 500 skaters from across the province on Feb. 14 to 16 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
"Our hope is that by hosting this event, we will renew interest in the beautiful sport of figure skating," said SC treasurer Barbara Mitschke.
SC will have some of its own STARSkate members going for gold in this competition. Mitschke sees the event as a great opportunity for Cornwall to showcase its first-class sports facility. She wants to attract a higher level of competition such as sectionals or provincials.
"Hosting competitions every few years is a way for us to stay viable," she said.
Laces will be kept tight at EOSIC since it's a qualifying event for the STARSkate provincial championships, featuring members of the Skate Canada-Eastern Ontario Section (EOS).
The top three skaters or teams in each category will go on to compete at the 2014 Skate Ontario STARSkate Championships to be held on March 15 and 16 in Wellington, Ontario.
"We're a very small club and this competition has the potential to keep skating at an affordable price for all children in Cornwall and surrounding areas," said Mitschke.
SC has 54 members ranging from ages three to 11 registered in their learn-to-skate program. Another eight are registered in SC's junior development program and an additional 17 in the STARSkate program for figure skaters. Levels range from pre-preliminary to senior bronze.
"During these three days, spectators will have the opportunity to watch talented athletes as they showcase what numerous hours of hard work and dedication can accomplish," she said.
Tickets for adults are $15/for the entire event or $6/per day; seniors: $10 and $4, children 12 and under: $3 and $1. They can be purchased at the Benson Centre.
For more information or to become a Skate Cornwall volunteer, visit www.skatecanada.ca/skatecornwall/en-us/home.