Skaters have Spooktacular time at Stockton Arena
The Stockton Figure Skate Club hosted a Halloween Spooktacular at Stockton Arena on Saturday, drawing a large crowd of costumed characters and parents, many learning how to skate from volunteers from the club.
By Lori Gilbert
Record Staff Writer
STOCKTON — Olympic gold medalist Brian Boitano and original Broadway Phantom Franc D’Ambrosio are in Stockton to promote their Nov. 9 show at Stockton Arena, “Holiday Movie Skating Spectacular: Where Did They Film That? The Holiday Music Journey.”
The show will feature ice skaters performing to songs from holiday movies.
Joining D’Ambrosio are Brent Barrett, Marcus Lovett and Ciarán Sheehan, who make up The Four Phantoms, men who have starred in Andrew Lloyd Wright’s “The Phantom of the Opera.” The Four Phantoms will tour the world beginning in 2017.
Among those joining Boitano on the ice are world champion Kimmie Meisner, four-time U.S. medalist and world bronze medalist Caryn Kadavy, pair skaters Caydee Denney and John Coughlin and eight-time British champion Steven Cousins.
The show will be taped for broadcast on ABC on Dec. 4 and Dec. 18. Members of the Stockton Figure Skating Club, who will perform ahead of the professional show, met Boitano on the ice and watched him show off some of his moves Tuesday.
By Scott Linesburgh
Record Staff Writer
STOCKTON — Shannon Mullins stood on the north end of the ice as she watched a large and enthusiastic group of young figure skaters work on their routines.
It was proof that the Stockton Figure Skating Club, which had ebbed for a few years, is back.
The club now has 25 members and is beginning to make noise at competitions again. There are plans for a synchronized team, and the organization has put together an experienced staff of coaches.
Mullins, 41, was a member of the club at the age of 10 and has returned as the skating school director.
“This is very good to see,” Mullins said. “This club has built back up, and we have a group of very strong skaters. There’s something special happening in our rink now.”
The Stockton Figure Skating Club, showed its strength at the Central California Interclub Association (CCIA) event in June in Santa Rosa. All of its competing skaters placed, and several had first-place showings, including Valeria Montes De Oca (pre-juvenile ladies freeskate, juvenile dramatic), Evan Mullins (preliminary men’s freeskate), Albina Jacobs (no-test freeskate and dramatic), Katie Mano (preliminary freeskate), Emily Benson (Basic freeskate and light) and Alex Stone (basic dramatic).
Abigail Stout, a Stockton resident who is entering her sophomore year at University of the Pacific, has been with the club since age seven and has had second-place finishes in preliminary ladies freeskate and ladies dramatic.
“I appreciate the passion and the skating family that we have here,” said Stout, 18. “Everybody is very close, and that makes it fun when we travel.”
The family was a bit small for a while. Mullins said the club, which was founded in 1975, was down to about seven members at one point and didn’t have any competition skaters. It has built back up with coaches such as Janelle Loberg-Cardoso, Adrienne Anderson, Josie Crudo, Kelley Williamson and Charlie Tickner, a 1980 Olympic bronze medalist who has been associated with the club for more than 20 years.
“I don’t know why we had the lull,” Tickner said. “Sometimes things are popular, then wind down, and figure skating isn’t a cheap sport. But we’re making a nice comeback, and we have a really good group now.”
The Stockton Figure Skating Club is also in the process of putting together a competitive synchronized team, and Chloe Burns of Stockton is excited to be a part of it. She also enjoys those moments when skaters are alone on the ice.
“I like that it’s a solitary sport in a way,” Burns said. ’You are really competing against yourself.”
Mullins said the club will continue to grow as young skaters seek an opportunity to learn. A few years ago, Serena Bailey of Stockton was engaging in an open skate at Oak Park, and spoke to Mullins about joining the club. She improved to the point where she won a Central Pacific Regional title this year.
“I’ve done many sports, and this is just unique,” said Bailey, 13. “When you are in the air during a jump and then you hear your blade on the ice, it’s just awesome. It touches your heart.”
Stockton FSC on the rise
The Stockton Figure Skating Club in California is experiencing a resurgence, according to a story that appeared in the Stockton's The Record in early July.
Once down to seven members without any competition skaters, the club now sports 25 skaters, including several who are making their mark in competitions. Also, a new synchronized skating team is being formed.
An experienced group of coaches, led by Skating Director Shannon Mullins, is leading this revival of sorts.
"This is very good to see," Mullins said in the story. "This club has built back up, and we have a group of very strong skaters. There's something special happening in our rink now."
One of the staff's coaches is 1980 Olympic bronze medalist Charlie Tickner.
"I don't know why we had the lull," Tickner said. "Sometimes things are popular, then wind down, and figure skating isn't a cheap sport. But we're making a nice comeback, and we have a really good group now."
The Forestwood Skating Club in Parma, Ohio, promoted the new Learn to Skate (LTS) USA program at the Parma City Parade this summer. The club handed out Learn to Skate USA "goodies" and more than 600 flyers advertising the club's LTS USA program. On the same day as the parade, the club welcomed two new members.
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STOCKTON FIGURE SKATING CLUB
P.O. BOX 4082
STOCKTON, CA 95204
OAK PARK ICE SKATING ARENA
3545 ALVARADO AVENUE
STOCKTON, CA 95204