Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Skating Club of Amherst to hold 50th anniversary show in Mullins Center

‘We’re really proud of all the work they’ve put in’

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(Collegian File Photo)

(Collegian File Photo)

(Collegian File Photo)

By Kathrine Esten, Assistant News Editor

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The Skating Club of Amherst is preparing to hold its annual skating show, “Gold,” on March 25 at 2 p.m. in the Mullins Center, featuring figure skaters of all levels from surrounding communities.

The annual ice show is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the club and will feature guest performances by national and international figure skating champions alongside club members of all levels. Over 100 skaters are scheduled to participate in the show.

Special guests include Ross Miner, a two-time U.S. figure skating national silver medalist, Team Excel Adult, the 2018 U.S. Synchronized Skating Championship Gold medalists and Maisy Ma, a seven-time Hong Kong National Champion and nine-time Asian Challenge Champion.

Ma, a freshman psychology major at the University of Massachusetts, said she was excited to perform at her “home rink.”

“Watching little kids makes me remember why I started and why I love this sport,” Ma said about skating with the club. “I train during their sessions, and that’s how I started developing a connection with the club and they invited me to the show, which is actually really cool for me as well, because it’s the 50 years anniversary.”

At the show, Ma will perform a self-choreographed routine to The Beatles’ “Yesterday,” and she said she “would really skate with [her] heart.

“I’ve liked the song for a long time, and it fits the theme this year well,” Ma added.

The Skating Club of Amherst was founded in 1968 by Rita Leaman and originally skated at Amherst College’s Orr Rink. In 1993, the opening of the Mullins Center allowed the group to practice and train year-round. Starting with a few dozen members, the organization has grown to more than 150.

With the recent 2018 Winter Olympics held in PyeongChang, South Korea, Leaman told MassLive that the club is getting even more calls.

Kyla Hastie, a member of the club’s Board of Directors, noted that skating can be a “very expensive sport,” and the non-profit club tries “to make skating accessible.”

“I think [the event] will be something all our skaters will remember,” Hastie said. “We’re really proud of all the work they’ve put in.”

Tickets for the event will cost $10. Profits from Sunday’s ice show will be donated to the Dakin Animal Shelter in Springfield. The club began fundraising in their March 16th skate-a-thon, and has raised almost $3,000.

Kathrine Esten can be reached at [email protected], and followed on Twitter at @KathrineEsten.

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