● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● HAPPY THANKSGIVING! ● ● ● ● ● ● Five SCNY skaters compete this weekend at ISU Grand Prix Skate America in Lake Placid, New York - Adam Rippon (senior men), Nicole Rajicova (senior ladies, representing Slovakia), Haven Denney (SCNY) and Brandon Frazier (All Year FSC) (senior pairs), and Maia and Alex Shibutani (senior dance). Good luck, all SCNY skaters! ● ● ● 10 SCNY members secured spots at the 2018 Prudential US Figure Skating Championships in San Jose, California by medaling at Eastern and Pacific Coast Sectonals. Congratulations Jimmy Ma (senior men - bronze - Eastern Sectionals), Audrey Shin (junior ladies - silver - Eastern Sectionals), Nadine Wang (SCNY) and Spencer Howe (LAFSC)(junior pairs - gold - Eastern Sectionals), Ainsley Peterson (All Year FSC) and Griffin Schwab (SCNY)(junior pairs - silver - Pacific Coast Sectionals), Chloe Lewis (All Year FSC) and Logan Bye (SCNY)(junior dance - gold - Pacific Coast Sectionals), Violeta Ushakova (novice ladies - silver - Eastern Sectionals), Oona and Gage Brown (novice dance - gold - Eastern Sectionals), Sylvia Wong (All Year FSC) and Zachary LoPinto (SCNY)(juvenile pairs - silver - Pacific Coast Sectionals), and Dalila DeLaura (SCNY) and Ruan Xie (SC Central NJ)(juvenile pairs - bronze - Eastern Sectionals)! ● ● ● Congratulations Skyliners Novice, Intermediate and Juvenile lines on winning GOLD at the Boston Synchro Classic in Marlborough, MA! ● ● ● Congratulations Adam Rippon on winning SILVER at the 2017 ISU NHK Trophy in Osaka, Japan! Nicole Rajicova placed tenth in the ladies' event, representing Slovakia. ● ● ● Congratulations Skyliners Junior and Senior lines on winning GOLD at the Anaheim Synchro Classic! ● ● ● 225 skaters from 24 schools competed November 11-12 at the Violet Ice Classic, an intercollegiate competition hosted by NYU at Sport-O-Rama in conjunction with the Skating Club of New York. Congratulations, all medalists and participants! ● ● ● Congratulations Central Park Ice intermediate on winning BRONZE at the Essex Synchro Classic in West Orange, NJ! Open Juvenile won PEWTER. Also competing were the Dix Hills Ice Chips who won BRONZE in synchro skills. ● ● ● Ashley Cain (SCNY) and Timothy LeDuc (LAFSC, assoc. SCNY) placed sixth in senior pairs at the ISU Grand Prix Cup of China in Beijing. Fellow SCNY member Grant Hochstein placed ninth in the men's event. ● ● ● SCNY member Paige Conners and her pairs partner Evgeni Krasnopolski won BRONZE at the ISU Challenger Series Minsk Arena Ice Star in Belarus, representing Israel. Alexander Gamelin (SCNY) and Yura Min placed fifth in ice dance, representing South Korea. Congratulations, Paige, Evgeni, Yura and Alex! ● ● ● 2017 US senior pairs champions Haven Denney (SCNY) and Brandon Frazier (All Year FSC) placed seventh at Grand Prix Skate Canada in Regina, Saskatchewan. ● ● ● Congratulations Maia and Alex Shibutani on winning GOLD at the 2017 ISU Grand Prix Rostelecom Cup in Moscow! Fellow SCNY member Grant Hochstein placed eleventh in the men's event. Team USA member Nathan Chen won gold. Go Team USA! ● ● ● Chloe Lewis (All Year FSC) and Logan Bye (SCNY) placed fifth place at JGP Egna-Bolzano, Italy. Congratulations, Chloe and Logan! ● ● ● Congratulations Adam Rippon on placing second in the free skate and third overall at the 2017 ISU Challenger Series Finlandia Cup in Espoo, Finland! Fellow Team USA member Vincent Zhou won silver. Go Team USA! ● ● ● Congratulations Olivia Serafini and Haley Beavers on winning GOLD and BRONZE in the senior ladies final at the 2018 North Atlantic Figure Skating Championships in Hackensack, NJ! ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY members Rena Ikenishi, Sophie Nye and Imogene Schwarz on winning GOLD, SILVER and BRONZE in the junior ladies final at Regionals! ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY members Violeta Ushakova, Laura Jacobson and Tiffany Pennella on winning GOLD, BRONZE and PEWTER in the novice ladies final at Regionals! ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY members Sophia Tsintsadze and Emily Zhang on winning GOLD and BRONZE in the intermediate ladies final at Regionals. Congratulations Ean Huang on winning BRONZE in intermediate men's. ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY members Tess Keller on winning BRONZE in the juvenile girls final and Louis Lorenz on winning BRONZE in juvenile boys at Regionals! ● ● ● 86 SCNY club members competed at the 2018 North Atlantic Regional Figure Skating Championships. We are proud of all of you! ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY member Alexia Paganini on winning BRONZE at the 2017 Nebelhorn Trophy in Oberstdorf, Germany, competing this season for Switzerland! Switzerland is now officially qualified to compete in ladies' figure skating at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea! ● ● ● Congratulations Alexander Gamelin (SCNY) and Yura Min on placing fourth in ice dancing at Nebelhorn, thus securing an ice dancing spot for South Korea at the 2018 Winter Olympics! ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY member Paige Conners and her partner Evgeni Krasnopolski on winning a pairs spot for Israel at the 2018 Winter Olympics by placing eighth overall at Nebelhorn. Team USA members Ashley Cain (SCNY) and Timothy LeDuc (LAFSC, assoc. SCNY) placed seventh. ● ● ● Congratulations Christina Carreira (SCNY) and Anthony Ponomarenko (SCSF) on winning GOLD at BOTH JGP Salzburg, Austria AND JGP Minsk, Belarus, thus qualifying for the 2017 Junior Grand Prix Final December 7-10 in Nagoya, Japan! WE ARE SO PROUD OF YOU!! ● ● ● SCNY member Grant Hochstein placed fourth in the senior men's event at the Challenger Series Ondrej Nepela Trophy in Bratislava, Slovakia. Alexander Gamelin (SCNY) and Yura Min also placed fourth, but in ice dance representing South Korea. Team USA members Erika Smith (SCNY) and AJ Reiss (LSFSC) placed sixth in pairs and SCNY member Nicole Rajicova placed seventh in ladies, skating for Slovakia. ● ● ● SCNY member Audrey Shin won SILVER in the Junior Ladies event at the 2017 Novice Junior Challenge Skate in Salt Lake City. SCNY members Oona and Gage Brown placed fourth in Novice Dance, and associate member Emilia Murdock placed fourth in Novice Ladies. Congratulations, SCNY skaters! ● ● ● 2017 US senior pairs bronze medalists Ashley Cain (SCNY) and Timothy LeDuc (LAFSC, assoc. SCNY) placed fourth at the Lombardia Trophy in Bergamo, Italy. Congratulations, Ashley and Tim! ● ● ● 2017 US senior pairs champions Haven Denney (SCNY) and Brandon Frazier (All Year FSC) placed fourth at the US International Figure Skating Championships in Salt Lake City, Utah. SCNY member Paige Conners and her partner Evgeni Krasnopolski placed fifth, representing Isarel. Congratulations, Haven, Brandon, Paige and Evgeni! ● ● ● Thank you to everyone who participated or volunteered at the 92nd Annual Middle Atlantic Championships! Results are posted here. ● ● ● Congratulations SCNY members Ilana Sedaka and Francesca Cilluffo on winning GOLD in the Junior Shadow Dance final at the National Solo Dance Final in Colorado Springs! Congratulations, Chiara Tan on winning PEWTER in the Pre-Silver Pattern Dance final and Ilana Sedaka on winning BRONZE in the International Pattern Dance final! ● ● ● The 2017-18 SCNY club ice schedule is now posted. ● ● ● Christina Carreira (SCNY) and Anthony Ponomarenko (SCSF) won GOLD at JGP Salzburg, Austria. Congratulations, Christina and Anthony! ● ● ● SCNY member Alexia Paganini won the senior ladies GOLD medal at the Slovenian Open in Celje, Slovenia, representing Switzerland. Club member Nicole Rajicova placed fourth, representing Slovakia. Congratulations, Alexia and Nicole! ● ● ● It's never to early to think about next year's yearbook. Check out our promo here. ● ● ● Chloe Lewis (All Year FSC) and Logan Bye (SCNY) placed fifth in dance at JGP Brisbane, Australia. Congratulations, Chloe and Logan! ● ● ● Welcome City Ice Pavilion! Its skating program is now part of The Skating Club of New York! ● ● ● Check out the Master Schedule for freestyle sessions and the Skating School for private and group lessons. ● ● ● Click here to join SCNY or renew your membership for the 2017-18 season! ● ● ● Congratulations Sky Rink All Stars, 2017 National Showcase Mini-Production Ensemble SILVER medalists! ● ● ● Congratulations Ryann Pearson, 2017 National Showcase BRONZE medalist in Intermediate Interp! ● ● ● SCNY member Audrey Shin placed seventh as US Figure Skating's junior ladies' representative at the Asian Open, August 2-5 in Hong Kong. Congratulations, Audrey! ● ● ● ● ● ●

[…]this story does not end with her winning any championship medals. It doesn’t have to. In fact, this story does not end at all. Because Susan is still figure skating several mornings a week – simply because skating is still the best way for her to unfold a certain beauty and transcendence within her life that she cannot seem to access in any other manner.

– Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear (Riverhead Books 2016)

My Yahoo Story: Susan Kittenplan

By Susan Kittenplan, Editorial VP, Yahoo! Inc. and President, The Skating Club of New York

A friend of mine, the writer Elizabeth Gilbert, called me a few years ago to ask if I would participate in a chapter of a new book. “Do you want me to edit a specific chapter?” I asked, since I worked closely with her as an editor at both GQ and Allure, and had assigned her essay that led to her book Eat, Pray, Love. “No,” she said. “I am writing a book about people changing their lives and taking risks, and I want to write about you and figure skating.”

Getting back on the ice after 20+ years didn’t feel like a big hurdle. It’s not exactly like climbing K2 or overcoming a stutter. It’s not even in the realm of risk Liz took when she left everything and traveled the world for a year to write her bestseller. Actually, I was a little embarrassed that people might laugh at this so-called challenge.

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I started skating when I was five years old and competed until I was 16. I loved it, but was tired of the early-morning practices, hated doing patch (figure eights), and knew that I was not headed to Nationals, let alone any Olympics. So I gave it up and thought I was done with the sport. However, returning to the ice has been cathartic and life-changing in ways I couldn’t have expected – both personally and professionally.

If you ever see me walking into the New York office on a Tuesday or Friday morning with a huge smile on my face, it’s because I have just come from the rink. I love the feeling of gliding and flying that I get from skating. As soon as my blades touch the ice, I instantly feel better. I also love the camaraderie of skaters with whom I share the ice – from ages 9 to 90. Seriously, there is a judge who is 90 years old who skates regularly, as well as a Nobel Prize winner in physics. Figure skating can seem effortless and elegant, but it takes tremendous strength, agility, and frankly, some acting ability to be a skater. And being a media executive takes some of those same skills as well.

I spent most of my media career at Condé Nast working at Vanity Fair, GQ, Glamour and Allure. But during my time as an editor at Harper’s Bazaar, I remembered that the Hearst offices were located near a skating shop in midtown Manhattan where I bought my ice skates as a little girl. One day, I stopped in after work and bought a far-too-expensive pair. Still, I couldn’t get myself to the rink. It seemed daunting. I was worried I wouldn’t be able to skate at all. It may sound clichéd, but after 9/11 happened, I thought I needed to do something I loved, something that would get me out of my head, something that would get me moving. Those sentiments finally got me to Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers, where I met my coach and my ice dance partner a few weeks later, and started to skate regularly.

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Getting back on the ice has made me less afraid of facing challenges. My return to skating as an adult, especially as an ice dancer, emphasizes strategy and teamwork. It’s impossible for me to think about work or anything else when I skate. Ice dancing requires a great deal of focus; I have to be in the moment and be aware of the space around me. There is no room for my mind to wander because I could trip, fall, and hurt myself and my partner or coach.

Skating also helped with goal setting. Just like those we set at Yahoo, I want to pass different test levels in ice dancing. I have been working on my pre-silver ice dances for a while; I keep failing the test for a dance called the European Waltz. I’m determined to pass – even if I have to wear down those judges and test every month until they get sick of me.

It is important to find your passion, something that makes you get up too early, stay up too late, search online for any story on the topic and feel giddy when you find kindred spirits who are also obsessed with your passion. Passion can be used as a form of what I call “Positive Procrastination.” You know how sometimes it helps to put one story or project aside and work on another? That is Positive Procrastination – distraction in a good way. Skating also brings me stress relief. It feels as if my brain completely switches to another frequency.

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I believe my passion makes me better at my job. When I skate before work, I come to the office with a clear head. Skating has pushed me to face certain fears, such as stage fright or speaking in public – something I have to do more at Yahoo than I have ever done before. Also, it has allowed me to become more flexible and understanding. Working with a partner requires that you do your best to not let the other person down, but it also helps you to understand that mistakes can happen no matter how much you have prepared (all good lessons that can be applied to any job). Ultimately, my passion for skating has taught me to bring grace and resilience to both the ice and the office. And there’s that whole “You fall, then you get back up” metaphor. Trite but true.

Ultimately, I said yes to Liz, and she did include me in her book Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, writing about my skating as only she can:

“[…]this story does not end with her winning any championship medals. It doesn’t have to. In fact, this story does not end at all. Because Susan is still figure skating several mornings a week – simply because skating is still the best way for her to unfold a certain beauty and transcendence within her life that she cannot seem to access in any other manner.

And she would like to spend as much time as possible in such a state of transcendence while she is still here on earth. That’s all. That’s what I call creative living.”

It is creative living that I have also found at Yahoo. I hope you find your passion and that it inspires you both in your work and, most importantly, in your life.

This article is republished with the permission of Yahoo! Inc.

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