Dear Skyliners,

The countdown is on! Skyliners Pep Rally is the biggest team-wide event of the season, and the only time when all 16 lines are together to show off their programs and celebrate Skyliners spirit!

And we can't do it without your help...

  • Donate auction items and bake sale goods
  • Buy your Pep Rally dinner tickets, raffle tickets and video download
  • Volunteer to help at the Pep Rally on-ice event and dinner

This issue of SkyBlast features the latest Pep Rally info and line round-ups, as well as an informative Q&A with Skyliners Central Park Assistant Coach Sarah Babb.

Enjoy, and Go Skyliners!!!
Spread the word!! This year's Pep Rally will begin the afternoon of Saturday, November 3 at Terry Conners Rink in Stamford, CT! As always, this is a free event showcasing our amazing skaters fresh out of the gate with their new programs! We encourage Skyliners alumni to join us along with individual coaches, family members and friends.
The Skyliners Auction is the biggest and most popular fundraiser of the year! Please help by donating items such as:

  • sports & entertainment / broadway tickets
  • travel (vacation homes/timeshares)
  • skating paraphernalia
  • gift baskets
  • gift cards
  • cash contributions (we do the shopping for you)

Contact Auction Co-Chairs Gina Ilardi and Renee DiGirolomo with your donation ideas at:
The Skyliners Pep Rally Dinner, Dance & Auction will be at the Stamford Hilton, the evening of November 3rd , immediately following Pep Rally performances (approximate start time 6pm).

All Skyliners skaters attend for $1 (and must RSVP) and skater families are encouraged to attend (Adult tickets are $85 and Skater sibling tickets are $45).

CLICK HERE to RSVP and buy dinner tickets. Ticket prices increase after October 30th.

PRE-ORDER RAFFLE TICKETS for the Apple Watch 4 and AirPods combo prize, valued at $600. The drawing will take place at the Terry Conners on-ice event. Raffle ticket prices increase on the day of the event.

CLICK HERE to take advantage of the advanced special pricing.

PRE-ORDER your PEP RALLY VIDEO DOWNLOAD! Get a professional video of ALL the Skyliners Pep Rally performances for only $10. The price increases on the day of the event.

CLICK HERE to pre-order.
Help make our Pep Rally the sweetest ever with your baked goods donation on the day of the event at the Terry Conners rink.

CLICK HERE to sign up for the bake sale and learn more about this important fundraiser.
Order the latest Spiritwear items! Above are just a few examples of what is now available. CLICK HERE to see more!
We are in full swing making travel arrangements for all competitions. Please look for emails from  and take the action indicated promptly . We have a short window of time to book rooms for over 150 families. To ensure that you are receiving these emails (and that they don't get sent to junk or spam), add  to your contacts or address book. If you have any questions, please reach out to Kathleen or JoAnn at that address.

With the help of Coach Stacey Isenberg and current Skyliners skaters, the Intro line is having lots of fun! They are excited to make new friends, learn new synchro skills, and they can't wait for the Pep Rally!

The Beginner line skaters have been working hard perfecting their routine and can’t wait to show everyone their moves at the Pep Rally! They are having a blast as a team and are excited to have an amazing season. 
Central Park Beginner & Pre-Juvenile

Central Park is off to a great start! They received their team apparel and learned the art of a Sky bun! With Pep Rally only a few weeks away, everyone is working hard to prepare for the event. The lines are excited to watch the other Skyliners perform, and to make new friends at the Pep Rally dinner & dance to follow. 
New Jersey Beginner

We have been practicing hard and we are proud to be Skyliners! Twelve smiling and shining NJ Beginner girls have been working diligently together. We cannot wait to see the dresses for our “Ice Cream Freeze” program! The line is looking forward to attending its first Skyliners Pep Rally - and will proudly skate and cheer on all the Skyliners!

Pre-Preliminary is off to a great start, trying out some fresh new moves and giving it their all on the ice at Brewster Ice Arena. Off the ice, the girls are practicing everything they need to prepare for the upcoming competition season: being organized in the locker room, getting ready quickly and knowing their line-up. They are teaching each other the Skyliners cheers and blasting them out before they practice! The skaters are really excited about their music and theme, and are eager to see their dresses. This month will bring lots of prep for the Pep Rally, and a fun team-building dinner before practice! Go Pre-Pre! Go Skyliners!

The Preliminary line has loved settling into its new home in Brewster for weekly practices. The locker rooms are red (“Awww,” said one skater, “it’s because we love, love this team!") and we are officially in the Banquet Room for off-ice, which makes everyone feel just a tad fancy. On ice, the girls are gelling as a team, encouraging each other through new patterns and working extremely hard to be in-step. The music is techno and bouncy, and more than one skater has been heard humming it as she walks through the parking lot. A particular highlight is a few Biellmanns in the second half. Everyone can’t wait to show off the routine for the Sky Family in November!

The Pre-Juvenile line is made up of 20 awesome skaters, all in their first year as Pre-Juvs! They are so excited about the fast and challenging program that is coming together, and they recently finished the new intersection creative element! Pre-Juv loves skating at the Harvey Rink on Wednesdays - and they are looking forward to outside floor practices in the crisp cool country air! The skaters cannot wait until Pep Rally, and are excited to cheer on everyone in full Skyliners spirit!
New Jersey Pre-Juvenile

On September 15th, the NJ Pre-Juvenile girls met at Board and Brush studio in Livingston, NJ for a team-building event. They had a blast creating their unique ice skating signs. The girls enjoyed getting to know each other and building friendships. At the rink, they continue to work hard on their routine, and are looking forward to showing it off at the Pep Rally!

A Skyliner always strives to be elegant and graceful from toepicks to fingertips! With the help of our ballet master Paula, and hours of training, we will be as close to that goal as possible! On the ice, the training is hard while Coaches Natalie and Nikki perfect every move and combination. You can feel the skaters' energy and excitement as their program gets better and better.
Open Juvenile

With summer behind them, these Open Juvenile girls are working hard and gearing up for Pep Rally, taking a moment to strike a pose for October SkyBlast!
New Jersey Open Juvenile

NJ Open Juvenile had an awesome boot camp! They worked extremely hard during the two days, and were able to complete the program! On day one, they enjoyed a break between the morning and evening sessions at Marissa Edelman's house, where they ate lunch & cake, played games, and watched a movie. The skaters love the program and are looking forward to Pep Rally! 

The coaches call the Intermediate line "Go-Getters," and it's no surprise why. Through all the Saturday and Sunday practices since boot camp, the Intermediate skaters have been 'going for it' and are totally motivated to perfect their program. They've been working hard, but took some time off to help Coach Pam celebrate her birthday!  #GoGetters #IntermediateRocks

This past month, the Novice skaters had time to bond and get to know each other better while working together to accomplish their shared goals and objectives. One of the recent highlights for the group of new and returning skaters was a team party, which included pizza, popcorn and movie-themed desserts, as they enjoyed a screening of "The Greatest Showman." What fun! At practice, the skaters have been focused and driven as they refine and improve their routine. The Novice line is filled with anticipation and excitement as the skaters look forward to taking the ice at the Pep Rally on November 3rd!

The Junior line has been busy preparing for their Team USA monitoring, and with its successful completion are ready to move forward and continue perfecting their awesome long and short programs. After the always fabulous annual Skyliners Pep Rally, the skaters will head off to beautiful Anaheim, California for their first competition!

The Senior line is determined to attain this year's goals. After a very positive Team USA monitoring session, they are excited to continue working hard in anticipation of the start of the season. After their exhibition at Pep Rally, they will join Junior at both the 2018 Synchronized Fall Classic in Anaheim, CA and the Porter Classic in Ann Arbor, MI. Go Senior!
SARAH BABB is currently the Assistant Coach of the Central Park Beginner and Pre-Juvenile lines. She has been working with Skyliners since 2012.
SkyBlast readers might notice that your last name is familiar. Can you explain? 
I am Josh’s younger sister. We grew up in Newfoundland. Josh and Becky (our older sister) started skating together from a very young age. I probably began when I was two or three. There was nothing else to do in our very small town of Harbour Grace. 
We had two rinks – one in our town named after my great-grandfather (Silas W. Moores Memorial Stadium), and one in a town called Bay Roberts, about a half hour away. At that age, we skated mostly in the evenings and on weekends. I was looking up to them as my older brother and sister. I feel like we were always on the ice together. 

Josh and Becky were dance partners. Did you ever do any ice dancing with Josh? 
One time I remember, we were doing the Kilian, and our feet got mangled together. I fell back and got a huge goose egg on my head. I was about 11 or 12. Our blades just got connected. It was probably my fault because he was the better skater. I was bawling, and I stopped for the night. 

At some point, Josh and Becky moved to Waterloo, Ontario to train. Did you move there too? 
When I was 12, they moved to Kitchener-Waterloo (Skating Club) to train. My mom, dad, and I moved there full-time when I was 13. At that point, I was doing singles skating, and Josh and Becky were dancing. I did compete and I was fully into it, but it was clear to me that I wanted to do other things.

What I always loved about skating was performing. I always wanted to do the artistic expression competition and I loved jumping, but I wasn’t into all the technical elements. I didn’t have the commitment to do the technical practice that I needed to advance. Also, my dance partner moved to Ontario to dance with me, and then he decided he didn’t want to do it anymore. So at 14, that was kind of a breaking point for me. He’s actually a musical theater performer in Newfoundland; his name is Michael Power.

My parents have always been very supportive of whatever we wanted to go for. It was definitely a conversation. I remember saying, I don’t know that I have it in my heart to do what is needed to advance to the level where my brother and sister are. There were other things I wanted to do. 
11-Year-Old Sarah at a competition
Sarah & dance partner Michael Powell
What were your other interests?
I loved singing, music and acting. I started singing at a very young age. Music was always a big part of my life, which is funny because there are not a lot of singers in my family. For a short period of time, I wanted to be an opera singer. I worked with a woman who was fantastic. We had Kiwanis Festivals and I would enter those all the time and sing arias. 

When I was around 15 or 16, I knew I wanted to go the acting route, and I really couldn’t do both acting and skating. I played Sarah Brown in “Guys and Dolls” in school, and I played Beauty in “Beauty and the Beast” in community theater. I desperately wanted to go to acting school. I applied to conservatory colleges and ended up going to my top choice, George Brown College. It had a classical theater school and we did a lot of Shakespeare, Chekhov and Ibsen. I’ve always liked dramatic roles. My brother always makes fun of me because he thinks I’m super dramatic, and I’m like, “You’re the dramatic one.” 

Did you continue to pursue acting?
I graduated theater school, which is amazing because so many people got kicked out; I think we started with 30 people and we had 12 in the end. I did some shows, like “Annie” in a little community outside of Toronto. Shortly after that, I moved to New York. I think it was after my brother and sister decided not to skate anymore. We had such a great relationship, and I was like, maybe I’ll try going to New York. Our whole family is very very close, and my brother and I are extremely close. I’m so extremely lucky to have the siblings I have. I don’t know what I would do without them. There was never that jealousy, it was very much that we each had our own thing.
12-Year-Old Sarah (middle) at a competition in Newfoundland
What did you do when you moved to New York?   
I worked in a bar and I was trying to make it, doing little things here and there. I did some TV, a lot of independent films, a lot of festival films that probably nobody’s ever seen. I was in “Limitless,” “The Mysteries of Laura,” and I did a pretty big movie called “Gods Behaving Badly.”

How did you end up working with Skyliners? 
About five years ago, my brother said, “You should try to teach skating because you’re a really good skater and you’re good at performing.” I’d done some choreography, but not with skaters. With Skyliners, I started doing presentation work: off-ice, musical interpretation and expression, helping skaters learn to bring it on-ice.

What was that like? 
It was different for different ages. Sometimes it was actually easier to work with the younger ages because they’re like, “We’ll do anything.” At a certain age, when they’re going through puberty, some are thinking they’re going to be embarrassed. I try to be very supportive and encouraging, and tell them that if they don’t do it, they look sillier. I try to give them the confidence to go with it. There are some kids that are just very comfortable in their own skin, and others who are more awkward – they just haven’t gotten there yet. We did some acting, relaxation exercises, and just being silly. 

Last year, you started being an assistant coach on the ice. How is that different than working with them off-ice? 
They don’t listen as well when they’re on the ice. Their experience is different. It’s harder to express yourself when you’re moving on skates, to incorporate body movements with facial expressions. You’re also further away from the audience, and holding onto each other. 
Sarah and Coach Alexandria Sais with the Skyliners Central Park Intro line (2017-2018)
How do you encourage skaters to bring expression onto the ice? 
I tell them it’s important, like in a theater performance. You may be doing it for the hundredth time, but there are people seeing it for the first time, and they want to have the experience too.

I really try to instill confidence in my kids. I think it’s super important, especially at a young age. I’m often telling them that if they want to be here, they have to work hard – and it does take work. And it’s okay if they don’t get there right away. It’s kind of hard when you see someone next to you and you’re thinking, “Why are they doing this better than me?” 
And I also talk about having fun. If you’re not out there having fun, is this really what you want to be doing? Every kid is different, so you have to figure out how to connect with each child.

Outside of skating, what do you do? 
(As if on cue, Sarah’s 3-year-old son Gideon pipes up, singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star as his mother answers questions for this interview while walking home from the park with him.) He just really likes to sing right now. And run around with his friends. Motherhood is the best thing ever. Also, Josh is a very doting uncle. 

Do you think he’ll want to skate? 
We haven’t tried that. I do want to see if he would like tennis. I’m a huge tennis fan; I can’t play, but I just love it. 

What else should SkyBlast readers know about you? 
I live in Brooklyn. My husband’s name is Josh too, and we’ve been married for almost six years but been together for longer. I’m an avid runner. I’ve done a couple of half marathons and I’ve done one full one. I did one of the half-marathons in just under two hours – that was probably my best time. I’m not fast, but I do like to run. I love food, which is good because the running kind of helps with that. I love to read. I love to dance, any kind of dance. When I first moved here, I was taking some ballroom dancing. l love tango and salsa.

Are you still acting?
Yes, when I can. I write a little bit, too. I wrote a one-woman show last year. I did it in a festival in New York, at a theater in Chelsea. The show was called “Bee.” I took a fiction writing course, and the show came out of that.

You would never guess by looking at me, but I’m kind of a shy person in a new situation, and then I usually open up pretty quickly. When I meet other moms in the park, it’s very uncomfortable for me.
I love Chekhov. When I was in drama school, I played Masha in "The Three Sisters" – that was a lot of fun. I do a lot of work with this theater company in the city called The Barrow Group. That’s kind of been my acting home. I did a play called "Orange Flower Water." 
I try to perform at least once a year in something. I need it for my soul. Sometimes I’ll have an audition every day for a couple of weeks, and then other times I won’t have an audition for a month. It varies. 

What things have you learned from skating that you feel apply to life in general? 
I think a lot of my kids teach me patience and that there is sometimes joy in the little things, the little accomplishments. Sometimes as an adult, when we’re trying to reach something that’s big and scary, they remind me that the little things are also pretty fantastic. When you see someone finally do a one-foot glide or a swizzle, and you see the joy in their faces, you feel “Oh, this is awesome!” It prepared me for motherhood, too.
Skyliners was established in 2001 by a group of parents who wanted to create the most competitive synchronized skating club in the tri-state area. In that first year, the team had three lines - Preliminary, Juvenile and Intermediate. Seventeen years later, Skyliners has grown into one of the top synchronized skating teams in the country, now 16 lines and 270+ skaters strong. While the majority of the skaters reside in the tri-state area, we also have skaters from Minnesota, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin. Our resume of achievements includes 25 Eastern championships, 12 National championships, 8 International gold medals, an historic Junior Worlds Silver medal....and 10 years designated TEAM USA. 
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