More than 135 of the best synchronized skating teams in the Eastern Region will compete in Lee County for the U.S. Figure Skating 2018 Eastern Synchronized Skating Sectional Championships, taking place Jan. 17-20 at Germain Arena in Estero. This is Lee County’s first time hosting the championship event, which is expected to draw more than 2,000 skaters to Southwest Florida, including a local team from the Florida Everblades Figure Skating Club.

A popular discipline within U.S. Figure Skating and around the world, synchronized skating uses the same judging system as singles, pairs and dance. It is characterized by teamwork, speed, intricate formations and challenging step sequences. During the Eastern Synchronized Skating Sectional Championships, teams consisting of 8-20 skaters are contending in preliminary, pre-juvenile, open juvenile, open collegiate, open adult and open masters levels. Teams are vying for a spot in the 2018 U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships, which takes place in Oregon late February.

The event is anticipated to bring 8,000 competitors and spectators to Southwest Florida, generating an estimated 7,000 hotel room nights and $4 million in direct visitor spending.

Qualifying rounds will be held on Wednesday and Thursday leading up to the competition’s championship rounds, which will kick-off with an opening ceremony at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday. All teams will perform a free skate with required well-balanced program elements, and teams at the junior level will also perform a short program. For more details and the full event schedule, visit www.easternsynchrosectionals.com.

Daily and full-week admission is available online through Ticketmaster at www.germainarena.com. Daily tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for youth ages 6-12. Discounted rates are offered for seniors and active military, and admission is free for children under 5 years of age.

About Lee County Sports Development
Lee County Sports Development was created in 2003 to meet the growing demand for sports development in Lee County, and is recognized by the Florida Sports Foundation as one of the state’s 25 Regional Sports Commissions. The Lee County Sports Development office leads the recruitment and implementation of amateur and professional sports events and activities in Lee County, with the goal of providing economic impact to Lee County. Through local partnerships with Lee County Parks & Recreation and others, the Lee County Sports Development office provides services designed to address the needs of local, national and international sports entities including housing, access to venues, event management, transportation assistance, event promotion, marketing and local sponsorship opportunities. For more information, call 239-533-5273 or visit www.leegov.com/sports.