The Wagon Wheel Figure Skating Club became a member club of the United States Figure Skating Association in September of 1956. Its original home ice was the Wagon Wheel Resort in Rockton, Illinois. The Club moved to Barrington in 1981 with the demise of the Wagon Wheel Resorts’s rink. In 1983, amidst the turmoil between the BAHL and BAFSC, the Club’s officers moved the home rink to the Rolling Meadows Ice Center. In 1995, the Club home rink returned to Barrington. For the 1999-2000 season, the Club Home rink was changed to the Crystal Ice House. The third ice surface added at the Crystal Ice House during 2000 will permit the Club to offer additional activites.Champions, such as Janet Lynn, have come from the club’s membership. Well know skaters such as Scottie Hamilton and Gordie McKellan have skated on club ice sessions. Wagon Wheel currently sponsors the Starlet 3 time National Junior Precision Figure Skating Champions and the 1996 Junior Olympics Juvenile Silver Medalist and 1999 Novice Ladies Champion, Deanna Stellato.
The Club has a history of serving its skaters with commitment to club ice sessions, frequent test sessions, pre-competition critiques and annual competitions as well as recognition and financial support of our members. The Club has always drawn skaters from a wide geographical area.
Most recently, the Club achieved recognititon by successfully co-hosting the 1995 Midwestern Precision Team Championships and the 1996 National Precision Figures Skating Championships. This recognition reflects on our skaters and allows the Club to continue serving our skaters better.
Wagon Wheel FSC merged with Barrington Area Figure Skating as a result of a unanimous vote of each of the club memberships on May 12, 1997. Operations of the merged club began August 1, 1997 following the election of new members of the Club Board.
Wagon Wheel FSC hosted the 2002 Midwestern Sectional Championships, November 15-17, 2001, at the Northbrook Sports Center.
Wagon Wheel FSC as part of the Skating Council of Illinois hosted the 2004 Midwestern Synchronized Team Skating Sectional Championships. The Skating Council of Illinois will be hosting the 2007 Combined Midwestern and Pacific Coast Synchronized Team Skating Sectional Championships, January 17-20, 2007, at the Fox Valley Ice Arena and the 2007 U.S. Adult Championships, April 10-15, 2007 at The Edge Ice Arenas.
History of the Barrington Area Figure Skating Club
The history of BAFSC is closely related to the Barrington Ice Arena. The arena was built in 1973 . Following various ice programs, the 1980 spring season came to a close with the prospect of the ice arena being sold and converted to warehouse space (it’s originally intended function!). A group of concerned parents got together, determined to keep recreational skating here, and formed the Barrington Area Figure Skating Club and the Barrington Area Hockey League. The 1980-81 season was the beginning of the rink and club until the 1995 season. The hockey club secured a lease from the owner and BAFSC obtained its ice from the hockey club. Although the first years were lean and operated on a month to month basis, a successful program was born. Club parents pledged their support by paying for their childrens’ skating for the entire year in advance. The 1980 season began with about 110 skaters. The first few years were marked with legal battles and constant fund raising to keep our kids on the ice.
After the sale of the arena in 1995, BAFSC obtained ice directly from the owner.
Sychronized (originally known as Precision) Skating Teams were an integral component of the BAFSC from the onset. The Starlet “Senior” (now Junior) team with 24 skaters, originated in the club’s first year. It was and continues to be coached by Beth Sisofo. The Starmites “Junior” (now Novice) team with 20 skaters was added the next year, coached by Jean Hamilton. The first Starduster (now Juvenile) mixed team was created during the 1983-84 club year with 10 skaters and coached by Candy Neveu. Although some of the team names and coaches have been changed through the last fifteen years, the club strength has been closely linked with the strong reputation of our teams. A club milestone was reached during August 1989 as the Starlets Senior Team coached by Beth Sisofo, the Starlight Junior Team, coached by Paula Bischoffer and the Starduster Drill Team coached by Ruthie Granger and Paula Bischoffer all brought home first place trophies at the ISIA National Competition in Detroit. During the 1998 season, the Club sponsored teams at the Preliminary, Juvenile, Novice, Intermediate, Junior and Senior levels, with all eligible teams qualifying to compete at the USFSA National Championships. The 1998 Preliminary team would have qualified as well, had there been a National event for that division. Our teams now (1999-2000) compete at the USFSA Preliminary, Juvenile, Junior and Senior levels.
The Club began as a non profit organization run solely by volunteers, just as it does today. Heading the teaching staff in 1980 was Ruth Granger, Jean Hamilton, and Beth Sisofo. “Magical Illusions”, our first ice show, presented in April 1980, directed by Beth Sisofo, highlighted 90 skaters. Our annual show, as well as our skating classes, have seen continuing growth. The April 1990 show featured over 200 skaters in the Club’s tenth year. It was choreographed by Beth Sisofo, our head professonal, whose creative talents showcased our skaters “Time and Time Again”. 1990 marked the retirement of Ruthie Granger as our Skating School director. Ruthie was one of the founders of the club in 1980.
Wagon Wheel FSC is a founding member of the Skating Council of Illinois.