Beginners share spotlight with world class skaters

Hamilton’s Dave Andreychuk Mountain Arena and Skating Centre is the place to be the weekend of Sept. 24-26.

The Isabelle Henderson Memorial Invitational Competition will be there, with the Hallwent Region, a collection of 16 local Skate Canada Clubs, acting as host.

“We are very excited to have Ice Dancers Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier competing in Senior Dance at Henderson,” said registrar Hazel Boon.

“Vanessa and Paul placed 14th at the 2010 Olympic Games, seventh at the 2010 World Championships and second at the 2010 Canadian Figure Skating Championships. We are also pleased to welcome Skate Canada National Team athletes Kharis Ralph and Asher Hill who placed fourth in Ice Dance and Kirsten Moore-Towers & Dylan Moscovitch who placed fifth in Pairs at the 2010 Canadian Figure Skating Championships,” added Boon.

“For these skaters, this competition is a tune up prior to leaving for their International Grand Prix assignments. In addition to these highly ranked skaters this competition is hosting skaters from all over Ontario. We even have skaters from Saskatchewan and Alberta coming here to compete.”

“But this is a competition for all skaters who are members of Skate Canada and the United States Figure Skating Associations,” noted the event’s chairwoman, Shana Barnard.

“Although our registration is mainly skaters preparing for competitions that will qualify them to move onward to their respective Provincial or National events, we also have beginners who will get experience in presenting their programs to the judges.

“This year, for the first time at a non-qualifying competition, the new judging system will be used for STARSkate categories from Junior Bronze to Gold in addition to all of the competitive categories. This is the same system used on TV for Skate Canada International and Canadians,” said Barnard.

“With this system, skaters receive written feedback on their competitive performance which helps them and their coach to make improvements down the road.”

Senior Short Dance is scheduled for 4:10 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday at 1:45. Both are in the Mountain Arena. Senior Pairs Short Program is scheduled for 1:35 p.m. on Saturday in the Skating Centre and 4:10 on Sunday in Mountain Arena. The complete schedule can be viewed at Skaters registered to compete can be viewed at

General Admission is $5 per day. Children 5 and under are free when accompanied by an adult. Admission can be paid at the door.

For additional information contact Hazel Boon at 905-524-3345 or