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National skating champs coming to Bellingham

"Hot August Nights" ice skating exhibition coming to Bellingham's Sportsplex

Skaters practice at the Bellingham Sportsplex, Wednesday, July 27, 2016, in preparation for the first "Hot August Nights" ice skating event on August 5-6, 2016. Jim Peterson, a two-time Olympic coach, and his coaching partner, Amanda Evora, who co
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Skaters practice at the Bellingham Sportsplex, Wednesday, July 27, 2016, in preparation for the first "Hot August Nights" ice skating event on August 5-6, 2016. Jim Peterson, a two-time Olympic coach, and his coaching partner, Amanda Evora, who co

It’s not often that Bellingham plays host to champion ice skaters. But Keri Ferguson, who has been the skating academy director at Bellingham Sportsplex since last summer, is bringing her former student, Jim Peterson, a two-time Olympic coach, and his coaching partner, Amanda Evora, who competed at the Vancouver, B.C., Olympics in 2010, to conduct skating workshops from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6, both on and off the ice.

“Jim and Amanda are an incredible coaching team,” Ferguson said.

Their “Hot August Nights” skating shows, sponsored by the Bellingham Sportsplex Skating Academy, and open to the public, will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Aug. 5 and 6, and will feature national dance and world pairs teams, as well as locals and guest skaters from Sportsplex programs.

The Portland, Ore.-born Ferguson, who started skating when she was about 4 years old, is a former U.S. national competitor who has trained and coached national and collegiate champions in her 30-year coaching career.

One of the pairs teams that will perform is U.S. National Junior gold medalists Joy Weinberg and Max Fernandez, she said.

Leah Krauskopf and her partner Caleb Niva, who grew up in Bellingham and competed at nationals, and Mei Mei Chun, who also grew up here, will skate in the shows.

The local skaters who are performing range in age from 12 to 24.

“They are skaters who have been in our programs and earned a post to skate in this show,” Ferguson said. “There are people in our community who don’t know we have a fabulous ice arena.”

Local car clubs such as Gearheads and Fourth Corner Elites will have classic cars on display at the event, and there will be a beer garden hosted by Boundary Bay Brewery, as well as food trucks.

Margaret Bikman: 360-715-2273, @bhamentertainme

“Hot August Nights” Ice Skating Shows

When: Friday and Saturday, Aug. 5-6. Gates open at 4 p.m.; shows begin at 6 p.m.

Tickets: $20 at bellinghamsportsplex.com.

Details: 360-676-1919.

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