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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Ice skaters of all ages, abilities shine in ‘Christmas Pops 2018’

Ice skating may only cross your mind when temperatures start to drop, but for some, like the members of the Lilac City Figure Skating Club, it’s a year-round activity.

On Saturday, those skaters will get the chance to show off what they’ve spent the year working on during “Christmas Pops 2018” at Eagles Ice Arena.

According to Kristen Labrie, Lilac City’s secretary and the co-chair of “Christmas Pops 2018,” the performance is a chance for all the club’s skaters to have a little time in the spotlight.

“We have some skaters that don’t ever compete, they just like to skate for fun, so this is a great opportunity for them to showcase their skating abilities in a non-competition role,” Labrie said. “It’s not so stressful.”

“Christmas Pops” is an annual event for Lilac City. This year, 42 club members and 18 beginning skaters from the Learn to Skate program will perform in the show.

“We want them there to be able to see some of these amazing skaters,” Labrie said of the Learn to Skate students. “This is how they all started. These amazing skaters all started at this level at some point and look how far they’ve come.”

Skaters choose their music and choreograph their piece with the help of their coach or a staff choreographer.

Labrie said the show will feature performances to just about every Christmas song imaginable, including “Frosty the Snowman.”

Skaters range in age from 4 years old to a skater who is a grandmother, who will perform to “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer.”

The show will begin with Emma Dickau, a 10-year-old skater who recently earned the chance to compete at the 2019 GEICO U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Detroit in January.

Labrie said it’s been several years since a Lilac City skater made it to nationals.

“She’s going to be skating her juvenile free skate program that she’ll be skating at nationals with Lilac City being her representing club,” Labrie said. “It’s a super cool opportunity for these little skaters and these new skaters to see somebody that they could actually see skating at nationals, especially a 10 year old. She is amazing.”

Labrie said some of the skaters practice at the ice rink four to six hours a day, five days a week.

Even the beginning skaters dedicated two to four hours a week to practice.

“This is a way for them to have that chance to shine and for our community to get behind and support them and all the hard work,” she said.

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