Rockford skating clubs slice ice

Rockford skating clubs slice ice


It’s cold, and that means it’s skating time. While skating is usually thought of as a cold weather sport, thanks to the Rockford Park District, Rockford has two indoor skating centers to use year-round. These facilities are used by three different Rockford figure skating clubs: the Northern Illinois Skating Club (NISC), the Illinois Skating Institute (ISI) Booster Club and the Figure Skating Club (FSC) of Rockford. Below is news about the various clubs and their activities.

NISC Synchronized Skating Team

This past weekend, the NISC’s NOVA Synchronized Skating Team, consisting of 13 skaters ages 9 to 11, competed at Ann Arbor, Mich. in the Dr. Richard Porter Classic named for the founder of synchronized skating.

The team, under the direction of Coach Tiffany Kress, had a strong performance, placing sixth in their division. The NISC’s other two synchronized skating teams under Kress’ leadership are Micro NOVA, a group of 10 skaters ages 6 to 8, and Stellar NOVA, a new team this year whose 12 members are young adults and adults ranging in age from 13 to 60. Neither of these two teams competed in Michigan.

In November, however, all three NISC teams competed in the ISI Booster Club’s Rockford R’n’R at the Riverview Ice House. More than 200 skaters from numerous northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin rinks, in addition to all three Rockford clubs, participated in performances that included compulsory, solo, pairs, theme and synchronized team skating. NISC provided the largest contingent of synchronized skating teams in the competition and the only teams from Rockford. These teams represented Rockford well in the Rockford R’n’R with Micro NOVA, NOVA and Stellar NOVA receiving first, second and first place respectively.

As in most ice skating competitions, skaters compete against each other, receiving scores for technical skill and interpretation. In synchronized skating, skaters perform intricate maneuvers as they move across the ice in a manner similar to synchronized swimmers and receive scores in much the same way as individual or pairs skaters.

The NISC’s synchronized skating teams perform at competitions and benefit shows throughout the Midwest. In December, all three NOVA teams will take part in the ISI Booster Club’s sixth annual “Nutcracker on Ice.”

‘Nutcracker On Ice’

The “Nutcracker On Ice” is a benefit program for the area food pantries. Admission to the performances is free; however, donations of nonperishable food items are requested. Last year, the Nutcracker benefit raised roughly 10,000 cans of food for the area pantries. It is hoped that donations this year will top last year’s record number. The ISI Booster Club had a public performance at Riverview Ice House on December 10, and a school performance is scheduled at the Rockford MetroCentre on December 14. Along with the NISC synchronized skating teams, skaters from the ISI Booster Club, the Figure Skating Club of Rockford and NISC make up the Nutcracker cast. In addition, the show will feature Rockford native, George Boswell, from television’s Big Brother and the Chicago Jazz Synchronized Skating Team.


Moving from the “Nutcracker On Ice,” the NISC’s NOVA and Stellar NOVA teams will compete at Fond du Lac, Wis. in January. After Wisconsin, the NOVA team then travels to St. Louis for the four-day Midwest Sectional in February.

For information on “Nutcracker On Ice,” contact Cheryl Sio at 633-1466 or 226-3271. Those interested in learning about synchronized skating can contact Star Crouch at 784-5593.

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