On February 15 and 16, the Fernie Skating Club presented its annual ice show, showcasing the achievements of their skaters and marking the end of the regular season.
It was a successful year for all, according to head coach Kathy Sutherland, who added that everyone was happy to be back on home ice.
“We were outside last year, which was very fun, but in a blizzard, not so much,” she said.
“The girls were pretty excited about coming back into the rink.”
This year’s ice show was more collaborative and Sutherland said this was intentional.
The only skater with a solo during the show was the club’s only senior student, Ashlynn Saluk. She has now graduated from the Fernie Skating Club after 11 years.
“She’s been one of our helpers with all of the little ones, she’s really great with them. She’s done really well. She’s a great part of our club,” said Sutherland.
Several Fernie athletes performed exceptionally at the regional level this season, earning themselves podium finishes and a spot at provincials in Kelowna from March 1-3.
Bree Chardonnens was crowned Star 6 and Star 7 Kootenay Region Champion (KRC) and Bronze Interpretive silver medallist, while Layne Corrigan was named Star 5 Kootenay Region Champion and Paige Polacik took silver in Star 7 and Bronze Interpretive. All three skaters are members of the Kootenay Region Team.
Avery Chardonnens took the Star 4 silver medal in the KRC. Sydney Polacik was crowned Kootenay Region Champion in both Bronze Interpretive and Star 8-9 solo dance, while Shanniah Richmond took fifth in Bronze Interpretive and fifth in Star 5 at the KRC.
Although she did not attend KRC, Lela Krotz was named a gold medallist in Star 6-7 solo dance at both the West and East Kootenay Invitational. She also took third at the Star 5 West Kootenay Invitational.
For the majority of the season, many of these skaters are competing away from home. Sutherland said it was nice for them to be able to come home and perform in front of their families on Friday.
This year has stood out for Sutherland for having a fantastic group of young skaters.
“This is one of the best teams we’ve had because they all love each other and they all encourage each other, and they’re so great. So whenever we do anything, they’re all in,” Sutherland explained.
“They’re all pretty excited about doing things together, which I love because it’s an individual sport. It’s difficult sometimes to be on the ice by yourself but something like this, they can be all together and skate.”