Possible figure skating payoff keeps PDX on its toes

Possible figure skating payoff keeps PDX on its toes

iStock_000004563761The City of Roses will play host this November to international figure skating competition Skate America in hopes of getting a shot at getting the National Championships back after five years.

The national was the last major figure skating event in Oregon. The week-long competition brought in about $15 million to $20 million to local businesses, say skating officials, who also estimate the three-day Skate America competition in November will bring about $3 million to the region.

The Oregon Sports Authority and the Rose Quarter hope winning the Skate America bid will show U.S. Figure Skating Association officials Portland is a hotspot for figure skating enthusiasm and maybe even another Nationals bid.

“Certainly our goal is to bring Nationals back to Portland in the future,” said Meyer Freeman, COO of Oregon Sports Authority.

Skate America is one of seven international competitions in skating’s Grand Prix series. Besides the usual sequins and glitz of a figure skating competition, audiences at November’s Skate America could see some of the big stars from the Vancouver Olympics, and that means big money for area retailers.