BLAINE, Minn. – (Oct. 5, 2017) – The National Sports Center is hosting the Upper Great Lakes Figure Skating Competition with over 500 skaters looking to qualify for the 2018 U.S. Figure Skating Championships.
“Right now we have skaters from Minnesota, from North Dakota and this area and they’re all vying for spots to qualify for sectionals and if they qualify they can go on to nationals which is in January in San Jose, California,” said competition coordinator Megan Romeo.
To be able to host an event like this on such a large scale, the Sports Center must go through a bidding process.
“So the process for hosting an event like this, organizations across the country will submit what we call a bid and we review all of the bids, take a look at the facility see what’s going to be good for hosting an event and we’ll do some site visits, take a look around, this is obviously such a big facility and there’s so many different places that we can access and once we review all of that information we actually send out an award letter, kind of let them know they’ve been chosen to host the event,” Romeo said.
The Sports Center was able to secure the bidding due to access to local businesses, hotels, and activities, along with its large size.
“Having those four sheets is super important because it allows us to have the amount of ice, there’s also tons of space available for vendors to come in,” she said. “Plus there’s areas for parents to hang out and there’s actually a deal going on that dads and their sons that have to come into the competition can actually go and golf on the golf course near by as well.”
Not only is the skating competition good for local businesses, but it’s great for local skaters competing as well.
“There’s skaters that have come in from all over but there’s also local skaters who compete here and practice here throughout the year and now they get to compete at an event that is much larger and on a bigger scale and even our skaters who aren’t necessarily qualifying for the sectionals or moving on anywhere get that experience of being able to compete at such a large event,” Romeo said.
The top four skaters from each event will move on to the sectional competition taking place in Bloomington later this year.