Dreams do come true! I never imagined at 65 to be attending skating camp. I spent five glorious days at the Music City Adult International Adult Skating Camp, The Scott Hamilton Skating Academy in Nashville, TN. My nerves off the chart. This was my first trip in three years since COVID and will I have the stamina to keep up? I skate three times a week for an hour, at camp I will skating at least three hours a day. I am excited to with fellow adult skaters. The energy and excitement from the skaters and coaches is electric.
We begin our day with a fantastic off ice warm up led by Snow Urbin, a ballroom dancer with grace. At the completion of the warmup we hold hands, form a large circle, and are asked what one word describes how we feel. For me the word is gratitude. Next we proceed to patch tracing figure eights on the ices practicing edges. A few sessions graced by the talented Scott Hamilton giving us valuable insight on skating and the sport of figure skating – the basics. Next, an ice warm up from Ice Flow, Dance and a drills exercise proceeding single file up and down the ice four lines varying elements – all skills in my toolbox.
The remainder of the morning wonderful workshops to chose from including spins, jumps, moves in the field dance, and choreography. Your choice and the opportunity to try some other discipline of skating. Often times I took a break and/or sat and watch in awe of my fellow skaters. Lunch served every day and a good time to relax, rest your feet and chat with fellow skates. Each day meeting and getting to know more of the skaters, sharing skating stories, all ages, all levels from all over the country.
Freestyles sessions filled the afternoons and the opportunity to take private lessons from an esteemed coaching staff which I took full advantage of. I participated in the group choreographed Spice Girls number and performed in the exhibition along with twenty of my fellow skaters, and practiced during my private lessons. I revisited ice dance and like riding a bike, I was pleasantly surprised it came back to me!
Best of all – thank you Christine – the very first time ever I have sparkle on my skates -purple of course, my favorite color!
Thank you to all my fellow adult skaters – you inspire me, you encourage me, you share our passion for figure skating, and you are wonderful human beings each with your own unique story.
Thank you to Music City for welcoming us, hosting us and to everyone who made the week so spectacular. Thank you to the coaching team for giving us you unwavering generosity, kindness, knowledge and fun – Kaitlyn Weaver, Elin Schran, Russ Witherby, Snow Urbin, Paula Trujllo, Peter Sasmore, Shawnee Smith, Becki Hendren, and Scott Hamilton. A special shout out to Paula Trujillo for all your hard works and efforts – the swag was great!
I am so grateful to be able to perform something I never envisioned doing. To my other exhibitors, you were all spectacular and your love of the sport shone through!
My heart is full of beautiful memories, new friendships, new skating knowledge that I will treasure forever.
Judy Lipson, is the Founder of Celebration of Sisters, an ice skating fundraiser established in 2011 to commemorate the memories of her beloved sisters to benefit Massachusetts General Hospital. Judy has published articles for The Open to Hope Foundation and The Centering Organization. Massachusetts General Hospital and SKATING Magazine featured numerous pieces on Judy’s philanthropic work. Judy appeared as a guest on The Open To Hope and The Morning Glory Podcasts. Her passion for figure skating secured the recipient of U.S. Figure Skating Association 2020 Get Up Award. Judy’s memoir, Celebration of Sisters: It Is Never Too Late To Grieve, released December 2021 by WriteLife Publishing.