Ice skating club celebrates 45 years with trip to Neverland

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published March 16, 2016

 Molly Schelosky, of St. Clair Shores, will perform as Tinker Bell in “Neverland on Ice” March 18-20 at Civic Arena.

Molly Schelosky, of St. Clair Shores, will perform as Tinker Bell in “Neverland on Ice” March 18-20 at Civic Arena.

Photo provided by Claire LaDue


ST. CLAIR SHORES — You can either head past the second star to the right and straight on till morning, or you can head to Civic Arena March 18-20 to get a taste of Peter Pan, Tinker Bell and Neverland.

“The show this year is going to be more like a play than a recital, so it’s going to be easier for the audience to follow along,” said Claire LaDue, the ice show director for the St. Clair Shores Figure Skating Club. “There’s going to be characters — Peter Pan and Tinker Bell — so they’ll be acting, as well as skating, throughout the show, so we’re trying to tell a story as well.”

The St. Clair Shores Figure Skating Club will present its 45th Reflections on Ice show — with the theme “Neverland on Ice” — with more than 100 skaters, plus alumni and parents hitting the ice. The fun show will tell the story of Peter Pan, with some modern nods to Disney’s Tinker Bell movies and even Disney’s “Jake and the Neverland Pirates” TV show.

“Even though it’s Peter Pan, it’s a little bit of a modern twist,” LaDue said. “There’s so many variations of the Peter Pan movie. ... We bring in other music, so it’s a good mix.”

The ice skaters will perform at 7:30 p.m. March 18, 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. March 19, and 2 p.m. March 20 at St. Clair Shores Civic Arena, 20000 Stephens St. Tickets cost $10 for adults and $8 for senior citizens and children 16 years and younger at the door, or $9 and $7, respectively, in advance at Civic Arena.

Performing in the show are the members of the club, who compete throughout the year. 

“Some of these skaters, they train up to three hours a day for the whole year ... competing, some of them regionally (and) nationally,” she said. “This is kind of like, pressure off. They look forward to it all year. After the show, they have to get back to training because our competitive season starts back up.”

Also skating in the program are any skaters in the Parks and Recreation Learn to Skate programs, some alumni and a group of parents.

“Our hope is, eventually, they’ll get a love for it and they’ll join the club and they’ll start competing as well,” she said. 

Competition is a big commitment, LaDue said, with skaters practicing hours before school, after school, or even being home-schooled to accommodate their schedule. They also train in other ways off the ice, like with ballet class.

It pays off, though — two skaters to be featured in this year’s show placed fourth in junior pairs at this year’s United States National Championships in Minneapolis in January. Justin Highgate-Brutman and Madeleine Gallagher will perform an exhibition of their short program at two of the Reflections on Ice shows, and Highgate-Brutman will be in all of the shows as Captain Hook.

“It’s a great show for all ages,” LaDue said.

Speaking at the March 7 City Council meeting, 14-year-old Molly Schelosky, of St. Clair Shores, said she loves having everyone come see the show.

“I really love ... performing for the audience and being with all my friends and having my family and friends all come watch me perform,” she said. Schelosky will play Tinker Bell in the show.

And before the first show, the club puts on a benefit performance for those with special needs in the area. Sponsored by Shorewood Kiwanis, the Special Needs Day at the ice show will be held at 11 a.m. March 18.

“They don’t care if they can see or not; they just like being there,” said Karen Biafora, of Shorewood Kiwanis, speaking of those attending the show. “The Civic Arena is so supportive of our event.”

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