Competitive skipping comes to Nelson this weekend, when the Rhythm Ropers host the 2011 B.C. and Yukon Provincial Skipping Championships.
Seven teams from the Lower Mainland, Island and Penticton will compete with the Ropers for spots at this year’s National Rope Skipping Championships in Calgary as well as provincial prizes.
Ropers assistant coach Leona Dimock says 131 skippers are involved in the weekend competition, but when judges, volunteers and parents are added in, the total number of people involved in the event swells to about 300.
The Ropers have done well at recent provincial championships and are traditionally one of B.C.’s stronger skipping teams, but Dimock says it’s difficult to predict the outcome of the competition.
“The kids work really hard to prepare and you never really know what you’re going to face when you get out onto the competition floor,” she says.
“They’ve done the best that they can and hopefully the go out and have a good day.”
Provincials, held in the L.V. Rogers gymnasium, begin Friday night with an opening ceremony and large group routines which feature eight to 20 skippers, each with their own rope.
Saturday is reserved for team events, with speed and power trials starting off the day and freestyle group routines running from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Dimock says that part of the competition is the most fun for spectators.
“They’ll be doing double-dutch, some single rope stuff and it will all be choreographed to music,” she explains.
“So there’ll be lots of variety and some interesting stuff to watch.”
The weekend finishes up with individual events Sunday. Once the day’s jumping is over, the top eight skippers in each age category will have secured a trip to nationals.