What Skates do we need?
At the lowest level, we allow any skates that are single blade and provide good support for skaters. But—- if parents are thinking their kids will continue in our (or other figure skating) program, it is best to start with figure skates. Switching from no toe-picks to skates with toe-picks is a tough transition… Their knees and wrists will thank you! If your kids like to skate on ponds as well, they should have “beater skates” for the pond and good skates for the ice rink. Even we can see the difference in blade quality….
Where to buy Skates?
Beginner Skates: Olympia Sports, Play It Again Sports (new and used), Replay Sports (used), at the Pro-Shop of the Cairns Arena in South Burlington, Dicks – call ahead whether they actually have figure skates in stock; or online at Dicks, Sears or L.L.Bean
Intermediate and Advanced Skates: Play It Again Sports (used), at the Pro-Shop of the Cairns Arena in South Burlington, Lake Placid Skate Shop; check out this website with some information on which models to choose
How to swap Skates?
Here is a link to a google doc to use for skate swapping. We do not organize skate swaps but do provide this google doc as a service.
How to size Skates?
Figure skates are sized the same way as regular shoes. To make sure use a measurement plate in a store (for both feet). Beware, skates run a bit on the large side. When you are trying on skates, wear the type of socks you will wear while skating. Your toes should not be bunched up at the tip, and the foot should not feel squeezed into the skate at the sides. Toes should be able to slightly wiggle.
How to care for Skates?
Do not let your kids skate with their regular skates on natural ice, the blades get destroyed by the knicks and bumps in the natural ice. Coaches will teach kids how to care for their skates.
Where to sharpen Skates and how often?
Beginners: locally at Forth ‘N Goal or at the Pro-Shop of the Cairns Arena in South Burlington or the Pro-Shop of the Gordon Paquette Ice Arena – at the beginning of season and in January
Intermediate & Advanced: MariAnn offers during the season to go to Boston or Montreal to get the good kind of sharpening – any parents going to Montreal can let us know and offer same. Skaters should take advantage of sharpening whenever MariAnn offers to make the trip.
What should the skaters wear?
Start with hat or helmet, warm sweatshirt, gloves, warm leggings (snow pants are a bit too much), wool socks. Your skater will learn what works for them best.
Some groups meet twice or more a week – are the lessons mandatory?
We are a recreational program – so do not require mandatory (but encourage) attendance.
If it’s possible for you to make it with a slight accommodation (e.g., leave the ice early to get to school on time), please just speak to the coaches – they try to make it work for all.
If a different morning is possible, we are perfectly happy to have your skater come on that alternative day (albeit they will not be included in the lesson).
If weekday mornings are out of question, we encourage you to make use of the Open Skate times on Saturdays to get additional practice on ice. Not participating in morning lessons will not change the registration fee.
We do ask that families make all practices once we start rehearsing the show numbers (though we try not to use the morning sessions for rehearsal, but rather use that time for skills). Skaters who do not participate in morning lessons will still pay the same fee.
Of course, skaters who are not using all available practice times, may not advance in their skills as quickly as others.
What else do I need to know?
Here are some answers from our fabulous Maria Graham in conversation with Eliza Eaton from Minibury
What happens when my kid changes their mind?
You will get a full refund through the Sunday after Thanksgiving.
When is the last day I can register my child to start skating?
Sunday after Thanksgiving.
Will there be more lessons after the IceShow?
Not organized by us but you can always contact Francesca about private lessons from Middlebury students.
What happens on Snow Days or Delayed Days?
When the Middlebury schools call a Snow Day or delayed opening, there will be no skating lessons.
What happens on no school days (like Fall Break/Thanksgiving)?
When the Middlebury schools are closed, there will be no skating lessons in the mornings. The rink may still be open if your skaters want to take a spin by themselves (with an adult around).
How to add the calendars to your Outlook calendar
Go to your online outlook, e.g., at Middlebury College go to go.middlebury.edu/webmail
Go to calendar (left bottom)
On top click on “add calendar”
Choose “from internet”
Add the links below for the various calendars
Name the calendar so it makes sense to you
Click on “Save” on the top
Be super organized for ever and ever
Go to the “Schedule” page of the website
Scroll down to the google calendar and find the + on the lower right side
Click on it and voila – the calendar should be added to your calendar
Or: Go to your gmail calendar
On the left side it says “Add a friend’s calendar – click on the + next to that box
Choose “From URL”
Copy the appropriate URL from below and copy it into the box where it says “URL of calendar”
Click on “Add Calendar”
Little Blues: https://calendar.google.com/calendar/embed?src=pl4mquj4143vdciddgoo1pmi08%40group.calendar.google.com&ctz=America%2FNew_York