Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Vancouver Island Seminar was a huge success. 102 participants had the opportunity of a life time when Kurt Browning led the annual event.
Below is the article that appeared in the Parksville Qualicum News.
When Skate Canada Vancouver Island organized its annual figure skating clinic at Oceanside Place Arena last weekend, it bypassed the hiring of a head coach.
Instead, it brought in a legend.
Kurt Browning, the four-time world champion and three-time Canadian Olympian, held a sell-out crowd of 100 young skaters rapt while headlining his first appearance at the local clinic Saturday and Sunday.
“I’m not one to get star-struck, but I do appreciate how fortunate we are to have him here,” said Micia Kanstrup of Victoria, who brought her daughter and two other members of their skating club to the clinic. “He’s signed autographs for the kids and really engaged them. We’re so lucky to have him here.”

Browning, 50, claimed the men’s figure skating world championship four times in a five-year stretch from 1988-93 — and placed second the other year. The flag-bearer for the Canadian Winter Olympic Team at Lillehammer, Norway, in 1994, Browning turned professional that year and remains active as a skater, choreographer and a CBC commentator.
But he attends only “two to five” clinics a year of the type held last weekend in Parksville.
“Kurt Browning is not a professional coach at all; he doesn’t actually coach like the rest of us who make our living from coaching,” said Elizabeth Kines, a longtime North Island skating coach. “But he has some incredible ideas, breaking down skating back to the basics of the running edge. And giving his love of skating back to the kids.”
While not officially a coach, Browning last weekend earned high marks from skaters, parents and coaches for his approach to young skaters across a variety of ages and skill levels.
“My seminars tend to be a little more casual,” Browning admitted. “They’re a little bit more fun, and oriented toward making sure they appreciate their own skating and know how to analyze their own skating from a realistic point of view.”
Tyler Bidnyk, director of skating for the local Sandy Shores Skating Club, agreed Browning’s approach was less “serious” than skaters would typically get from a professional coach in a clinic setting. But he said that approach had plenty of value — for both skaters and coaches.
“Part of what I was watching was his teaching tactics, and seeing how can I deliver a lesson better,” said Bidnyk, who served as one of the clinic’s three coaches.
“So it was kind of inspiring for me to see him naturally adapt to these younger kids and do stuff they can do. If he’s not a coach, well, he delivers very well. Everyone’s loving it; he’s hilarious.”

Clinic organizer Matt Willis, director of skating development for Skate Canada Vancouver Island, said the turnout for this year’s clinic brought “record numbers.” It actually sold out its maximum available 100 slots and left a waiting list of skaters wishing to attend.
“When I got the email, I’m like, ‘I’m signing up for this now,’” said Olivia Bau, a skater from Nanoose Bay.
Skating with and demonstrating for groups of skaters, Browning kept up a constant stream of patter — much of it humorous.
“There’s stuff about jumps and spins, of course,” he said. “But a lot of what I’m trying to give the kids is about their self-worth. There’s a lot of opportunity, if they have the right attitude, to come out of this sport with a lot of confidence and a lot of tools to tackle life away from the arena.”
While local skaters like Bau and teammates Tabitha Devaughan and Indianna Berg of Parksville said they knew of Browning before the clinic, he was not a household name for all the young skaters.
“My daughter didn’t know him. We had to Google him,” Kanstrup said with a laugh. “But then they were impressed.”

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

VI Region July News and Update of Directory

The annual planning meeting of the VI Region Executive was held this past weekend in Parksville. As a result of this end of season wrap up and initiating the start of the 2016-17 skating season, the Region Directory has been updated and included in the EXECUTIVE Tab on the website. All names and contact information for the VI Region Board, Committee Chairs and Committee Members as well as the Executive portfolios are included in this tab.

 Special Announcement:
The VI Region's Annual seminar for Star 3 and higher skaters is now full. A waitlist is currently being taken. This huge response is due to the seminar leader for this year KURT BROWNING!
We all look forward to this seminar and having Kurt share his experience and talents with our skaters.

                                            **2016 BC/YK SECTION AWARDS **

The annual BC/YK Section Hall of Fame Inductions and Awards were presented at a sold out celebration banquet on Saturday, April 30, 2016. Hosted by Ted Barton and guest Tracy Wilson, and assisted by Liam Firus and Keven Reynolds, the banquet hall was filled with enthusiastic skaters, parents, coaches, officials, guests and many volunteers from all around our section.

Hall of Fame Inductees:

Coaching Category: Dr. Hellmut May – renowned Kerrisdale coach who came to Canada from Germany in 1954 and coached many national and international competitors
Official Category: Jean Heffernan – lifelong volunteer accountant, Chief Accountant at Worlds in Vancouver in 1960
Athlete Category: Tracy Wilson – B.C. native who along with her dance partner Rob McAll, won 7 Canadian Dance titles, 3 World Bronze Medals and a 1988 Olympic Bronze Medal
Athlete Category: Barry and Louise Soper- 4 consecutive Canadian Dance titles, 9th place at the 1972 Worlds
Lifetime Achievement Award: George Hatton
Volunteer Award of Excellence: Gail Weber
Coaches Choice Award: Jane Sawbridge
Dogwood& amp; Volunteer Award: Margot Delorme
Audrey Moore Participation Award: Susan Morriss
Sections Officials Award: Cheyenne Irvine
Officials Award: Sherri McAndless
Susan Griffin Committee Chairman Award: Sharon Dahl
Elizabeth Swan Memorial Award: Lesley Morrison
Recreation Coach Award of Excellence: Marilyn Kreuzinger
Section Volunteer Coach of the Year: Colleen Laferriere
Competitive Coach of the Year: Joanne McLeod
Competitive Athlete of the Year: Sarah Tamura
Adult Skater of the Year: Nancy Edwards
CanSkater of the Year: Valen Collins
StarSkate Athlete of the Year: Claire Sibbald
Program Assistant of the Year: Sarah Wildy
Skaters Award of Achievement: Riley Condon
Youth Promise Awards: Aleksa Rakic, Olivia Gran, Vasilisa Matantseva

Saturday, February 27, 2016

April 1st, 2016   AGM Announcement

The VI Region Annual meeting takes place Saturday, April 3rd at the Sunrise Ridge Resort in Parksville. Elections for the VI Region executive will take place at this time. Our Guest Speaker is Hilary Quick. Hilary is an official from the Coast Region and is going to be taking over as the BC/YK Section Chairperson for the 2016-17 season. Come and meet Hilary and find out what is happening in our region. Everyone is welcome.

New to the Website is the Golden Feet category. Have a look at the most recent club "Gold" medal accomplishment. Clubs are welcome to submit these Golden moments to suemorriss@telus.net for an addition to the website.

February 2016     NEWS

Congratulations to the Juan de Fuca Skating Club for their organization and holding of the VI Region competition earlier this month. Thank you for your leadership in running this event.

Positions are open for the Board for the upcoming VI Region AGM. If you are interested in running please contact Karen Mallon. Deadline for applications is the first week of March.

Good luck to our VI Region skaters who will be competing in the Super Series Star Skate Final in Kelowna on the March 4th weekend.

Many clubs are holding test days in the next few weeks as the winter season comes to an end.
Comox Valley is very proud to present their Las Vegas ice show, featuring Elvis Stojko, on March 19th. There is an afternoon matinee and an evening show.

VISI (Super Series Vancouver Island) is once again being held in Parksville on April 8-10.  The entry deadline is coming up soon. Thanks to the Sandy Shores and VI Region board members for their hard work on running this event.  Volunteer are still needed. Please let Launie at Sandy Shores know if you can help out.    Or find out where you are needed on the  Volunteer Spot website: http://vols.pt/Sjadzo