Sioux Lookout Skating Club welcoming Kurt Browning to town for two-day seminar, public skate
Tim Brody - Editor
Skaters from Sioux Lookout and across the region will get an opportunity this weekend to learn from four-time Canadian figure skating champion and four-time World Champion Kurt Browning, who represented Canada in three winter Olympics. Members of the community will also get the chance to skate with Browning at a public skate on Saturday evening.
“Last fall, some of our skaters participated in a seminar in Thunder Bay with Kurt and we were able to make connections with him then. And then, throughout the course of the year, we looked at what is something that we could bring to our club this fall and we thought that Kurt was such a vibrant and amazing presenter for the seminar, so we reach out to him… and that got the ball rolling for us,” explained Sioux Lookout Skating Club [SLSC] President Kim Savoie.
The two-day seminar will run Sept. 24 and 25 at the Sioux Lookout Memorial Arena and Sioux Lookout Recreation Centre.
“We’re super excited,” Savoie said. “Skaters will have an opportunity to skate with him [Browning] for over three hours over the course of the two days and they’ll be working on skill development, presentation, expanding and challenging their skating skills. Not only do we have Kurt, we have various stakeholders who are involved in our weekend seminars. We have FIREFLY who will be focusing on some mental health and stress management skills and strategies, we will have the Northwestern Health Unit as well that will be working with our participants. They’ll be focusing on healthy body imaging and healthy diet and nutrition. We have a dance instructor from Dryden coming who will be working in the gym with participants and doing introduction to ballet dance. We also have another person coming in and he’s doing core strength building in the gym.”
Savoie said the club has room for 60 skaters. There is still some availability, which Savoie said people can inquire about through the club’s Facebook page or by emailing [email protected].
The public skate will take place on Saturday, Sept. 24 from 5 to 6 p.m. at the Sioux Lookout Memorial Arena.
“We have limited spots available for our public skate. It’s between 5 and 6. $10 a skater. It’s free for the public to come out and watch. And of course, the public is welcome anytime during the two-day session, if they just want to stop by the arena and check out what’s going on, they’re welcome to come and get a view. The public skate is an opportunity for members of the community to skate on the ice with Kurt.”
Savoie added, “We felt it was important because when we were planning this weekend and getting things organized for our participants, the support from the community was immense. Different businesses, organizations, have supported us in various ways, all of our participants are receiving a swag bag with various items from local businesses and organizations. Another thing that really helped us in providing our community with this opportunity was that we were able to participate in the Municipal Accommodation Tax program. So, we were able to access funds through there to help bring Kurt in, but also bring outside skaters into our community and support local businesses… the people that donated, the businesses and organizations that donated, we could not have made this possible without them. It’s been amazing… we just thank all of them. And, of course, we thank all of our community that supported us in the various fundraising events that we did this summer, like the different taco in a bag, BBQs, and Rubber Ducky Race, because that helped to make this event possible as well.”
“Another thing that really made this possible was the core group of parent volunteers that we have on our executive and skating parents that have devoted time and energy, devotion to the skaters, it’s been unbelievable,” she concluded.