Figure skaters are passionate about their sport and clubs. If my old club were closing down, I’d be writing a “Save the Arborg Skating Club” blog. My skating club isn’t closing, though. Luckily the multitude of hockey teams keep my small former club able to thrive.
The eleventh hour is fast approaching for the Royal Glenora Club skating facility. On June 25, members will vote whether to keep the facility open or shut it down.
Yes or no.
Two YouTube videos popped up this month, each supporting a different side.
The “no” video was full of factual information.
It stated the skating facility is “the Clubs (sic) most valuable area for future development.” The producer(s) of the video, RGCMembers, proposed turning the arena into tennis courts and a locker area. However, the makers of the video shot themselves in the foot by saying “all this [new courts] will cost money/more than a new rink.”
According to the comments section, some members also took issue with the name RGCMembers, as the producer does not speak for all members.
The RGCMembers’ video claimed a shutdown of the skating facilities will save $107,000 a year and “that money can help support skaters for ice time elsewhere and set up a temporary space for overcrowded kids programs.”
It’s a wonderful idea. However, where in the ice starved Capital Region is the no vote going to find ice? In the entire region, there are less than 65 arenas for over one million residents, including outdoor rinks.
The “no” video was basically a blueprint with words. Not one person appeared.
Enter the “yes” video.
The “yes” video focused on the figure skaters and how the sport shapes who you become.
The video was a skating montage with a message. Instead of money, and facts and figures, the video promoted the RGC as a “world class sports facility.” It made mention of new programs and “sustainability for the RGC,” but did not elaborated on it. Produced by Jadene Ferreira, the video focused on how skating is creative, and it made note that the RGC is part of Edmonton’s community.
The video featured RGC coach Ben Ferreira and his advice to his students: “be the best that you can be.”
“At the end of the day…look at yourself in the mirror and go ‘did I do the best that I could.’ ”
And in the “yes” video, we also see who is truly caught in the middle of this, and who is really impacted.
The kids. And it’s unfortunate they are in this position.
When adults share childhood memories, we don’t talk about our time spent in algebra or the time we found Latvia on the map. We usually talk about sports and our achievements – sports shape who we are.
A kid should be able to skate without worrying their rink becoming a tennis court.
Just a question: have the members asked the kids what they want?
If the majority of the kids want the rink closed down, close it down. If they think the rink is too cold and the ice is too bumpy, shut it down. If they think the shared changing rooms are out of date, tear them down. If the majority of the kids want the skating facilities to stay open, listen to them, and find a way.
Because sometimes the people who don’t have a say know what the answer should be.
NOTE: I am not affiliated with the Royal Glenora Club, or other club, private or public. As with other skating clubs, Royal Glenora Club does follow me on Facebook and Twitter. Some of my acquaintances are Royal Glenora Club members, just as my other acquaintances are members of other clubs, private or public, and have affiliations with clubs and associations. I was not approached by the Royal Glenora Club or its members, acquaintances or the Edmonton Journal to produce this story.