40th Annual Ice Carnival ‘wows’ audience

By Joel Charron

Skate Amherstburg held their 40th Annual Ice Carnival this past Saturday.

Dubbed “Please Don’t Stop the Music” was Skate Amherstburg’s first Ice Carnival at the United Communities Credit Union Complex. The show brought back music and memories over the past 40 years.

Maegan Brush glides along the ice during her routine Saturday afternoon at the United Communities Credit Union Complex.

The Ice Carnival was started in Amherstburg by a group of parents, shortly after the construction of the Amherstburg Arena 40 years ago, as a way to celebrate the opening of the facility.

Skate Amherstburg president Sharon Kawai said she was very pleased with the production of the Ice Carnival. Kawai said the organization has had to deal with few minor technical difficulties, but they were quickly resolved.

“This Carnival is all about improvising,” joked Kawai. “This is our first time in the new building so we are going to have those minor glitches.”

Kawai said neither of the shows were completely sold out, however roughly 500 tickets were sold for both shows.

“If we get a total of 1,000 people that’s way more than we could have got at the old arena,” said Kawai.

Open Air Events helped with the video screen and curtains and Kawai added that the UCCUC staff was fabulous in helping Skate Amherstburg from blocking out the windows so the screen could be seen to setting up the lights around the rink.

Three-time national champion, 2008 world champion, and 2006 Olympic bronze medalist, Jeffrey Buttle brought

Jeffrey Buttle is all smiles as he waves to the crowd after his performance Saturday afternoon

tears to Kawai’s eyes.

“His skate was awesome,” said Kawai.  “I think Jeffrey being here kicked it up a notch.”

Buttle said he was happy to be apart of the 40th Annual Ice Carnival.

“It’s awesome,” said Buttle. “Events like this are so important. I remember when I was young and beginning to skate events like this were the highlight of my year.”

Buttle added that getting experience in front of a large crowd is key for figure skaters that want to skate at the next level.

“It’s like having a goal as an athlete. You have that goal and its something to work towards,” said Buttle.

Buttle said the UCCUC was a beautiful facility.

“It’s amazing and unbelievable. The skaters are very lucky to have this facility,” he said.

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