ABC Harlem Skating Script

8:31 pm Speeches - scripts - annual reports


V/O – There’s a rennaisance underway in historic Harlem, a vibrant New York neighborhood beset by challenges to be sure, but a neighborhood built upon rock-solid foundations of love, family and community, a neighborhood that continues to inspire artists, writers, musicians, athletes – and even presidents.
Photos: Kids on street, Apollo Theatre, Kids on Harlem Streets

V/O: Now, there’s a spirited new community in Harlem, the neighborhood’s best-kept secret: Figure Skating in Harlem. This not-for-profit organization provides girls of color much-needed educational, cultural and athletic opportunities through the unique discipline and art of figure skating. Figure Skating in Harlem is where girls come to dream – and to soar, on the ice and off.
O/C: Girls Ice Skating

Music: classical Music or Jazz
Ella Fitzgerald/Sarah Vaughn
Jazz of 20-30’s

Winner Next Door
B-Roll of girls walking Harlem streets
FSH Logo with scratch sound of skating
V/O: Figure Skating in Harlem – the only organization of its kind in America – started out in 1997 with a handful of girls eager for new challenges. Officially launched with the generous support of Olympic skating champ Scott Hamilton, and fully supported by parents and community, Figure Skating in Harlem has grown by leaps and bounds – and triple lutzes!
(video of Scott)

B-Roll – photos from the beginning of FSH – maybe B&W

Scott Hamilton – b-roll of him skating with girls and holding t -shirt.

Access Hollywood
Scott Hamilton
Scott with girls on ice and then holding FSH sweatshirt.
Announcer: In snowy NYC, the very public Scott showed one of his favorite
causes inspiring future Olympians at FSH an organization that teaches
unprivileged kids to skate.
Access Hollywood
Scott Hamilton
On Camera
It’s character and physical development. It’s important to have that.


V/O: Skating is a wonderful metaphor for life. Here in Harlem, where many girls live on the edge, there is now a second home, one built by role models and staffed by mentors. Here at Figure Skating in Harlem, a double whammy of education and exercise is key to improving self-esteem, promoting teamwork and creating the leaders of tomorrow.

Skating b-roll
Classroom B-roll
Still photos of classroom
Winner Next Door
B-Roll of girls studying and doing homework

V/O: How do we make that happen?
* Academic tutoring
* Education classes
* Skating and dance instruction
* Community Events

Weekend Today
My name is Sharon Cohen. The program found me more than I founded the
program when I hooked up with a East Harlem Community agency and started
teaching figure skating.

Initially we started with a handful of girls maybe 10-15 girls and now we
have 50 and girls are on a waiting list.

We knew they could learn a lot of life skills with skating but we also
wanted to continue to sharpen their academic skills so they can go onto
college and create the kind of life they dream of. They require a “B”
average in school. We have tutoring after school, was have theory classes


Gives them a context in which to not only skate but to study the sport and
understand how it involves. The importance of the dance component was
really to help them with their posture getting a sense of their bodies and
V/O: Every day, girls in Harlem confront the special challenges of inner-city living: from negative stereotypes and poverty to poor self-image and teen pregnancy. By providing a unique athletic opportunity to girls who need it the most, Figure Skating in Harlem helps girls age 6-16 stand a little straighter, skate a little faster — and aim a little higher.

The program works, which is why so many champion skaters like Scott Hamilton and JoJo Starbucks have gotten involved. Last year, a star-studded roster of skating celebrities turned out for the annual end-of-season ice show, where Figure Skating in Harlem honored Harlem Ice Queen Mabel Fairbanks.

B-Roll from Mabel Fairbanks Tape

V/O: One week after winning Olympic Gold and shooting to the very pinnacle of the skating world, champion athlete Sarah Hughes was in Harlem, teaching a master class for the girls. Our honorary board of directors includes Oksana Baiul, Dick Button, Rudy Galindo, Scott Hamilton and Debi Thomas. Talk about inspiration!

B-Roll Sarah Hughes and Girls
HBO Footage
Sarah Hughes
00:30 or 00:47 or 01:22
Giving out Olympic hats
3/22 – 25:22:00
Ty Babolonia Interview
FSH is a wonderful organization. Tonight they are honoring Mabel Fairbanks
who put Ty and Randy together and I’m here tonight and I have to thank them.
FSH has support of some very special people — the parents of the students
and the kids could testify to that too…
Weekend Today
My name is Sharon Steward. I am mom of _______when she gets out there and
she knows where she is going, what her goals are she comes a long way and we
see a sparkle in her eye and I have joy in my heart.
Weekend Today
My favorite part is the ice skating. I like that we dance and they help
with homework too.
3/22 Girls Interviews
FSH is great for girls to build self-esteem
3/22 – Girl Interviews
FSH is a fun and education program. It teaches how to skate …..
3/22 – Girl Interviews
FSH is a great program. It’s so fun.
3/22 – Girl Interviews
FSH teaches us about ice skating and helps with homework.
3/22 Mom Interviews
FSH has been a great asset for my daughter. She has increased her goal
setting capabilities both on and off the ice and she’s doing better in
school. I don’t know how we’d make it.

3/22 Mom Interviews
Has changed my daughter’s ….going to gifted school. Does homework, etc.
V/O: Figure Skating in Harlem asks students to make a commitment to themselves and the program. Girls who participate sign a skating contract and are responsible for maintaining a B-average in school – which up to 90 percent of the girls do. A dedicated staff of tutors, youth counselors and a certified social worker helps guide and support the social and academic development of our students. Report cards are collected and monitored throughout the season.

It’s been proven that after-school activities helps keep girls on the straight and narrow. Is there anything straighter or more narrow than a pair of skates? At Figure Skating in Harlem, girls must participate at least two afternoons a week from October through April. We provide each student with figure skates and other equipment, and the team uniforms required for practice.

3/22 – 18:18
Kid Interview
FSH has enhanced me to think more wisely.

3/22 – 19:20
Kid Interview
I love FSH because of fun, awards banquet and ice skating.

3/22 – 20:00
Kid Interview
I like FSH because I know there are lots of friends to help others as a
community and a team.
V/O: There’s a good reason why this country’s top media outlets have paid attention to Figure Skating in Harlem. Everyone from The New York Times, The Today Show and Jet Magazine to Eyewitness News, Access Hollywood and WCBS has touted the success stories created every day at Figure Skating in Harlem.

Shoot Magazine covers and/or articles

Today Show logo???

Use Eyewitness entire report
3/22 – 21:20
Atoy Wilson
I think FSH is a great organization to have these young ladies come in and
take them through a series of steps not only to become good skaters but
there are instructions and education and history and all consummate things
to make them well rounded citizens. I think it’s an excellent program and I
just applaud the community of Harlem and NYC and the directors and board
members who established this program for young ladies. It’s very, very
Weekend Today
There’s no program like this in the country that I’m aware of that combines
figure skating with academic studies and opens up the sport of skating to
African Americans and Latino girls in the way we’ve been able to do it.
HBO Footage
Sarah Hughes with girls in hallway
It’s fun being at Olympics. It’s like one family, just like you guys.
Song: We are family …
Photos of girls having fun
B-Roll of girls playing patty-cake
Group wave
Video of girls playing games
V/O: Using figure skating as a powerful magnet, Figure Skating in Harlem provides girls facing incredible challenges with an innovative ice skating and educational program that builds positive self-image, teamwork, leadership and academic achievement. Buttressed by a safe and supportive environment, these girls develop into strong, healthy and intelligent young women.

Music lower

V/O: In Harlem, too many kids live on the edge. But at Figure Skating in Harlem, they’re learning to skate on it.
Wrap up V/O

Raise song: We are family

Logo Fade out
Girls 6-16.
Counter stereotypes.
Face challenges of inner-city living, violence, poverty teen pregnancy, low self-esteem, eating disorders, a lack of athletic activities.
organization founded in 1997
FSH goes back to the early 90’s with a handful of girls. In 1997, FSH
officially launched with the support of Olympic skating champion Scott
ince 1997Develop self-confidence and poise. Teaches nutrition, improves body image.

The benefits are extraordinary, but the cost is high. Ice time alone is $330 an hour. In addition, the organization provides all lessons, attire and equipment. In addition, FSH offers field trips and three main events a year: a winter skating party, an ice show and an awards banquet.

The only program of its kind in America.
The skating community embraced the program.

Skating in Harlem (FSH)


FSH provides its students with these specific services:

On-ice Instruction
Academic Tutoring
Group and Individual Counseling
Educational Theory Classes
Movement Instruction
Ice Skating Institute Testing
Master Classes with guest pros
Cultural Field Trips
Performance Opportunities (annual ice show, and special exhibitions)
Awards Banquet
Summer Camp Scholarships
Internships and Mentoring Opportunities


Girls between the ages of 6 and 16 who live in Harlem are elegible for enrollment. Participants primarily come from low and moderate-income families. While FSH is supported almost entirely by private donations from individuals, foundations and corporations, parents are asked to make a small tuition payment, which covers 10% of the overall costs. Some scholarships are available.
In 1989 the Princeton and Yale women’s ice hockey teams came to Harlem to conduct ice skating clinics with a handful of girls from a community-based youth agency called Upward, Inc. Learning about these visits, Sharon Cohen, a former competitive figure skater and Brown University and New York University graduate, decided to jumpstart a more rigorous figure skating program. Under the umbrella of Upward, Inc.and with generous grants from the New York Community Trust, FSH blossomed.

Launched by a special visit from Olympic Gold Medalist Scott Hamilton in 1997, FSH officially separated and incorporated as a non-profit in the State of New York. FSH has expanded to serve girls throughout the Harlem community.

Students practice as a team and receive group skating instruction based on age and skill level from qualified professionals at Riverbank Skate Park Ice Arena located in Harlem and other area rinks. Students are tested twice during the season using Ice Skating Institute Standards to monitor their progress. Master classes are also held throughout the season by guest pros such as Sonya Dunfield and Robin Wagner.
Students are required to attend weekly academic tutoring, counseling, movement and educational theory classes, which provide a link between skating and academic subjects such health and nutrition, music, geography, basic physics and history. FSH also emphasizes drug and pregnancy prevention and provides students with guest lectures on topics from physiology to finance.
Students attend field trips to professional ice shows and other cultural events. They participate in exhibition performances, host an annual Winter Skating Party for the community at large, and attend an Awards Banquet to recognize their accomplishments on and off the ice. Students may also enter an essay contest and apply for scholarships to attend the prestigious Chelsea Piers Summer Figure Skating Camp.

As a culminating event, FSH hosts an annual ice show designed around a special musical theme. Each year students have the opportunity to perform in colorful costumes along with guest professionals before an always enthusiastic and sold-out crowd of family and friends. (see Highlights)

At Figure Skating in Harlem’s 4th annual ice show, Board Vice-Chair Tamara Tunie guided the sold-out audience on an intergalactic celebration of the stars of the future. Held at Riverbank State Park Ice Arena, “2001: A Skate Odyssey” gave fifty FSH students a chance to show off their skills in brilliant metallic costumes as they skated to music from “Space Jam,” “Age of Aquarius,” “Star Wars” and others. In several creative production numbers, students taught the audience about the importance of perseverance, commitment, harmony, teamwork, and leadership. FSH instructors Alyssa Stith and Joy Thomas skated a moving number to music from the motion picture “Amistad,” while Slava Zagorodnyk, 1997 World Men’s Bronze Medalist and 1996 European Champion was the evening’s special guest skater. He entertained the enthusiastic crowd with his rendition of “Men in Black.” Stars such as, Mary Wilson and former World Champion Elaine Zayak attended the show and received special honors along with James Harding, a representative from Governor George Pataki’s office. The show was sponsored by Chase Manhattan Bank, Canon Business Solutions and ABC, Inc, which also generously provided volunteers.

A WINNING AWARDS BANQUET: Speeches by Sarah Hughes & Robin Wagner
Organized by the parent association, this year’s Denise Hicklin Awards Banquet was held at the Spence School in New York City and featured keynote speakers Sarah Hughes, 3rd ranked world figure skater, and her coach Robin Wagner, who had conducted master classes with students early in the season. The FSH girls received awards for their participation in the program as well as medals for academic achievement. Sarah Hughes presented a special teamwork award. These deserving students received tickets to “Champion’s on Ice.” Denise Hicklin, a FSH parent, was remembered for her many contributions. The evening concluded with the presentation of the first annual Charles Mayer Citizenship Award presented to the13-year old who best-exemplified sportsmanship and honor.

FIELD TRIPS GALORE: FSH Students witness top Professionals
To open the season, the girls of FSH visited Chelsea Piers-Sky Rink to watch the Ice Theatre of New York’s Fall Show. They witnessed beautiful, artistic ensemble skating. At mid-season, the girls traveled to the Continental Airlines Arena to skate with professional cast members of Feld Entertainment’s “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast on Ice.” They enjoyed a tea party with cast members prior to viewing the live show. Finally, a smaller group of students who distinguished themselves by demonstrating exceptional teamwork, were treated by Sarah Hughes and Robin Wagner to “Champions on Ice,” A Collins Family production that featured the world’s best skaters at the Nassau Coliseum. After the show, students received special back stage passes to see their idols up close.

In order to provide the best services possible and encourage academic excellence in our students, FSH expanded its Education Program and welcomed Bernice DeAbreu as it Education Director. Also added to the team was social worker, Jackie Wilder, who provided girls with individual and group counseling sessions, which explored adolescent and pre-adolescent issues. Our teenage students had a special treat, when they traveled to Disney’s Worldwide Publishing Headquarters to participate in a day long workshops exploring various careers in the publishing field from marketing and production, to design and sales.

It was a beautiful clear day in Central Park as FSH and WWRL Radio hosted “Soul on Ice,” FSH’s Annual Winter Skating Party. This year marked the largest turnout ever with over 400 guests. The party gave students the opportunity to mentor their friends and family members on the ice and helped raise the most money to date to support the Awards Banquet. Raffles prizes were given away.

Who says the skating has to end just because the season is over? Not Chelsea Piers. For the fourth year in a row, Chelsea Piers has given Summer Figure Skating Camp Scholarships to deserving FSH skaters. Not only did six of our young girls get to figure skate, they also enjoyed gymnastics, ballet, rocking climbing and much more.
Figure Skating in Harlem has received much positive recognition in the media. Articles have appeared in…




Comments are closed.