Petrenko heads star-studded annual Boot Skatin’ benefit

The world’s best Olympic and international ice skating stars will join the Rockford Ice Hogs and a cast of more than 100 local and regional skaters in the Champions for Charity Fifth Annual Boot Skatin’ Benefit for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 13, at the Rockford MetroCentre.

This year’s Boot Skatin’ Benefit will feature Olympic and World Gold Medalist Victor Petrenko, American skating champions Rudy Galindo and Nicole Bobek, professional jumping sensation Surya Bonaly, 2002 Winter Olympian ice dancing partners Peter Tchernyshev and Naomi Lang (one of the few Native American championship ice skaters), and the comedy/acrobatic team of Vladimir Besedin and Oleksiy Polishuk. Additional performers are expected to be named soon.

Ticket prices are $35, $20, $10 and $5. Special $100 premium seats can be purchased by calling John Lind at (815) 282-4615. Information about the benefit can be found at

The Rockford Ice Hogs will also take part in the annual country music-themed benefit that features local and regional skaters and synchronized skating teams.

Over the last four years, the Boot Skatin’ Benefit has raised nearly $30,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Sanctioned by the United States Figure Skating Association (USFSA), and sponsored by the Northern Illinois Skating Club (NISC), top-rated country music station Q-98.5, WTVO-TV channel 17, Milbury Cadillac, Best Western Clock Tower Resort, IDEAL Advertising and Printing and others, the benefit’s proceeds will be donated to the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.

In addition to the professional skaters, the country music-themed show will showcase the internationally acclaimed Chicago Jazz and Revolution synchronized skating teams, many regional and local soloists and the local Nova synchronized skating team.

Contact show coordinator and NISC representative Cindy VanderWaal, (815) 962-3011, or Jim Jennings, volunteer media coordinator, 885-1417/966-3110, for more information.

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