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Decades of dazzle: Woodbury Figure Skating Club turns 20 years old

Ella Anderson,9, has been skating since she was four years old when she became involved with the Woodbury figure skating club. Submitted photo.1 / 2
The Woodbury Figure Skating Club is celebrating its 20th anniversary this week. Submitted photo by Kim Anderson2 / 2

The Woodbury Figure Skating Club is turning 20 this year and will be celebrating the milestone with its annual Spring Ice Show.

More than 90 skaters will take to the ice Friday and Saturday as they perform 'the Great Skate Together' as part of the annual spring event.

The production will have three performance with the first starting at 4:30 p.m. and a second show at 7:30 p.m. April 21 at the Bielenberg Sports Center. A third showing will take place Saturday at 11 a.m.

The show features skaters from Parents Plus the Northern Fusion Synchronized skating teams and the newly formed District 833 skating team.

Formed in 1997, the Woodbury Figure Skating Club started when a group of skaters who used the ice rinks at Bielenberg wanted to expand options for skaters.

The club now has more than 100 home club and associate members. Some of its members compete locally and regionally in competitions sanctioned by the Ice Skating Institute (ISI) and United States Figure Skating.

The Woodbury club also hosts a fall competition and holds numerous exhibitions as a member of the Twin Cities Figure Skating Association.

The club has seen a number of skaters finish high at international competitions, as well as at state championships.

Plaques lining the walls of Bielenberg also memorialize the names of skaters who've completed the highest level of skill testing United States Figure Skating offers.

Many of the Woodbury group's members start skating shortly after they're able to walk.

Ella Anderson, 9, began taking skating lessons when she was 4 years old.

Anderson comes from a long line of figure skaters. Her great grandmother was an Ice Follies performer and the tradition of figure skating has continued to live on for her family.

Kim Anderson, Ella's mother, said being a part of the Woodbury Figure Skating Club has allowed her daughter and others to forge long friendships with other members.

"I love the friendships that she's formed through skating," Kim Anderson said. "Skating is definitely her no. 1 love."

Often skaters like Ella Anderson get their start through the "Learn to Skate" program offered for all ages through the Woodbury Parks and Recreation Department.

The Learn to Skate program is also extended to adults and includes professional coaches affiliated with ISI and the Twin Cities Figure Skating Association who teach each lesson.

Many figure skating club members continue skating through adulthood, said Brenda Walker, the Woodbury Figure Skating Club's director.

The annual spring show also gives skaters an opportunity to be a part of a professional production equipped with wardrobes spotlights, a curtain, decorations and a red carpet.

"It doesn't even look like an ice arena," said Walker said.

Tickets for 'the Great Skate Together' are $6 for students and $8 for adults. Admission is free for children under five.

Mathias Baden contributed to this report.

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