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Local skaters take to the ice for 'Cool Summer Nights' show

August 08, 2004|by TARA REILLY

tarar@herald-mail.com

Doing jumps on ice makes Kristy Long feel like she's floating on air.

As for spins? She likes those, too.

"It's just fun to get dizzy," said Kristy, an 8-year-old ice skater from Frederick, Md.

Kristy joined 11 other skaters in the "Cool Summer Nights" ice show Saturday at the Hagerstown Ice & Sports Complex.

"I thought (my performance) was pretty good," said Kristy, who did a combination of moves to music called "Fiesta Tango."

She said she began skating when she was 3 years old and has performed in shows locally and in Minnesota, where she used to live.

"It's cold, but it's kind of worth it," she said of ice skating. "It seems like there are more better things than complaints."

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Victoria Pembroke, 14, of Hagerstown, said she likes ice skating because "I like to compete a lot."

Victoria said she started skating when she was 10 years old and practices every day.

"I like the moves and my coaches," she said.

One of the things Victoria thinks about while skating is whether she'll remember her moves, she said.

Erin Benedum of Hagerstown, who coaches Victoria, said she and her ice skating students usually pick out moves together and often practice about 20 hours for a performance.

Michell Webber, Victoria's secondary coach, said she often travels from her home in Boston to Hagerstown to coach Victoria.

Webber also coached Benedum.

Webber said she thinks taking ice skating lessons is a good way to keep youngsters out of trouble.

"It gives them less time to do anything else, besides school, of course," Webber said.

Jennifer Kaszubski, the complex's skating director, said the facility holds annual shows in December and May. This was the first year for the August show.

The age of skaters in Saturday's show ranged from 8 to 18 years old, but other shows featured skaters as young as toddlers to those in their 50s.

The shows are open to all skaters, Kaszubski said.

"I think our kids are getting pretty good," she said.

Kaszubski said ice skating is a good sport for youngsters because it teaches them discipline.

"Not too many ice skaters get in trouble," she said. "Anybody any size can reach whatever goal they set for themselves."

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