Friday, January 28, 2011

Go Figure: World Class Skating in Greensboro

Gotta man up and confess: I attended the US Figure Skating Championships at the Greensboro Coliseum yesterday, the pairs short program and the ladies short program.

I have witnessed a flying camel, twizzle, rocker...even a hydroblade. I know all of this thanks to a little radio I purchased in the arena. It provided technical commentary on the skating...priceless! And that knowledge helped me overcome costume bias, ie, if I don't like your outfit (or music for that matter) then I can't appreciate your skating.

Did you know those skimpy costumes cost $700 and up? Ditto for custom skates.

The Question...from a column by Ed Hardin in the Greensboro News & Record: "The effort to bring the skating championships here was long and arduous, and there are those who still question the decision to bring them to the South in general, much less Greensboro, N.C."

The Answer...from David Raith, Executive Director of US Figure Skating: "The layout and the venue have been very good, and the local support has been excellent and the marketing has been good, which has been reflected in ticket sales."

The Answer...
from Gold Medalist Scott Hamilton: "I'm surprised it hasn't hosted before. I've performed here a lot when I was touring with Stars on Ice, and I just assumed it had already been here. Being in the South really isn't strange."

Congratulations to Greensboro
...and to Raleigh sports marketer Hill Carrow who led the effort to land the big event. Also, Durham-based NC Amateur Sports is managing the FanFest. As's a regional effort.

Now, it's on to the NHL All-Star weekend in Raleigh...blades of glory across NC!!!