The Eganville Skating Club – Bringing Holiday Spirit to the Ottawa Valley

       Winter is coming, is a famous quote from George RR Martins, A Song of Ice and Fire. It is the words of House Stark, a great and ancient House that lies to the North of the land of Westeros. In the North, it’s always cold. Snow is a constant, even during the summer months. Winter is a sign of constant hardship as the frost bites at the tips of unprotected fingers and toes. The breeze snatches the breath from the lungs of young and old alike, and the snow blankets the land in a sheet of white. For the people of Westeros, it’s almost apocalyptic in nature. For Canadians, it’s just another December. As the year draws to a close, and we Canadians of the Ottawa Valley settle in for the holidays, sports are still very much alive. With the holidays just around the corner, a group of athletes in Eganville, Ontario are lacing up their skates as they prepare to put on an end of the year Christmas Skating extravaganza for their community.

For over 40 years, the Eganville Skating Club has taught the graceful art of figure skating to the people of Eganville, Ontario. Shari Kosowan began her career as a skater at age 3, and quickly came up through the CanSkate Program. Inspired by her heroes Dorothy Hamill and Elizabeth Manley, Shari skated competitively until she was 18 years old. Unfortunately, an ankle injury would bring an end to her competitive career. Despite this, and having already completed her Coaching Course at 16, her passion and experience fueled her new career as a Coach. After taking a break and moving out West to start her family, she came back to the Ottawa Valley. Her passion for skating was passed on to her daughters who followed in her footsteps, sharing her love for the sport. With the help of her two daughters, Shari has taken up the role as Head Coach of the Eganville Skating Club and has exciting plans for her skaters in the new year! As this year comes to an end, Shari and her skaters are not ready to rest just yet as they have been working hard in preparation for the Eganville Skating Club’s final show of the year.

The Eganville Skating Club is hosting their final show, “When Christmas Comes to Town”, to end this year’s milestones and accomplishments with a bang! Set for December 21st, 2022, Shari spoke excitedly about bringing Christmas cheer back to the community, “We wanted to bring Christmas spirit back to the village. It’s been a really long time with the pandemic since we’ve had things to look forward to and what better way to bring everybody together over the holiday season? That’s our theme, holiday spirit.” The event will have a number of special guests including Shari’s own hero, Elizabeth Manley, as the show’s MC. Junior Men’s Ontario Champion David Shteyngart is also set to make an appearance. The show will also feature the talents of the Eganville Skating Clubs own skaters. Inspired by her brother to begin skating, Lindy is one of the club’s young skaters. Lindy shared some of the things she likes most about the Eganville Skating Club. “I like the coaches and how they encourage me to do stuff. I also like working with my friends on the ice, it’s a lot of fun.” Lindy is excited as she and her friends will be performing a group number in the club’s upcoming show. She plans to continue skating in 2023 and hopes to reach a higher level in her skating career in the future.

Katelyn and Noah are two of the clubs more advanced skaters. Much like her coach, and inspired by her older sister, Katelyn began her skating career at 3 years old, “They couldn’t keep me off the ice, I was always at the rink with my sister”. Having been with the club almost her whole life, Katelyn praised the club’s atmosphere and its coaches. “I just feel so comfortable here, and I love Shari. I grew up skating with her and her daughters.” Noah also spoke on what he likes most about skating for the Eganville Skating Club. “I like the challenge and the team aspect of it is a big thing for me. It’s affected me positively, it’s made me better at other sports with my cardio, and I’ve met a lot of friends along the way.” Noah and Katelyn are excited to see figure skating coming back to the community as they haven’t been able to perform in the last two years due to the pandemic. They both also have their eyes set on 2023, with new goals to pursue in the new year. Katelyn has a long list of goals including getting a Gold in Skills, Gold in Dances, work on her axle and go up a level in Free Skate! Noah kept his list short and simple – “I just want to land an axle.”

As 2022 draws to a close and we prepare for the arrival of the holiday season, the Eganville Skating Club continues to thrive.  With a strong bond between the team and the community, Shari Kosowan has fostered lasting relationships between its coaches, its skaters, and the people of Eganville. Shari spoke on what she loves the most about being a coach, and the rewarding experience of working with her team and the young athletes of her club. “I love my coaching team. I love getting to work with my two daughters, and of course the kids are awesome.” She took a moment to watch as her athletes skated passed. She offered critiques, and despite the coldness of the arena, her voice was warm and brought smiles to the faces of the children. “Inspiring kids is really rewarding to me. This gives them life skills; they’re learning and cooperating. They’re striving for their goals. I would say the big thing is it keeps them involved in the community and gives them an activity in their hometown.” Regarding goals for the new year Shari kept her focus on the kids of her team. “In terms of goals, I just want to see these kids continue to enjoy what they’re doing and come back for another great season.”


  • Sharon Maye
    December 21, 2022 at 8:08 am

    Great article. Good luck to all the kids. Noah I hope you land that axle!

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