michael with young FSH skaters

Prominent American couturier and read-to-wear designer and Figure Skating in Harlem honoree b michael with young FSH skaters (Photo by Alex Lipowec)

*One of the most anticipated yearly ice events – Skating with the Stars — is presented by Figure Skating in Harlem (FSH) at Trump Rink in Central Park.

This year’s Skating with the Stars gala took place on Monday, April 8, 2013 and honored prominent American couturier and ready-to-wear designer b michael along with Emmy-nominated sportscaster Andrea Joyce.

The stellar skating soiree is always attended by the who’s who in the skating world and this year’s event attracted Nicole Bobek, Dick Button, Sasha Cohen, Javier Fernandez, Tim Goebel, Scott Hamilton, Emily Hughes, Sarah Hughes, Tara Lipinski, Evan Lysacek, Kimmie Meisner, Adam Rippon, JoJo Starbuck, Teresa A. Teague, Johnny Weir and Paul Wylie.

The annual benefit that features foods and drinks for adults and children is also attended by celebrities, corporate and community leaders and is a fun-filled evening of ice skating at the Trump Rink in Central Park where attendees experience the priceless opportunity of skating side-by-side with their favorite Olympians.  Guests also had the chance to bid on exciting auction items to benefit the deserving young girls of FSH topped off with an evening gown from b michael America Couture Collection and front row tickets to his couture show during New York Fashion Week this September

“I am humbled by this recognition from Figure Skating Harlem,” said b michael, creative director and founder of b michael AMERICA.  “It is an honor to help these wonderful young ladies and empower them to reach for and achieve their dreams.  They are the real stars, and it is important that we all continue to help them shine.”  The occasion was doubly rewarding for b michael, as the esteemed designer also launched his latest ready-to-wear collection, b michael AMERICA RED, available at select retailers, including select Macy’s stores nationwide. For more information, please visit http://www.bmichaelamerica.com.

“I am truly delighted to be part of the Figure Skating in Harlem Skating with the Stars Gala,” added Andrea Joyce.  “Through my work as a sports reporter at NBC, I have developed a true appreciation and love for figure skating and have learned firsthand the vital importance of an organization like FSH.  I look forward to saluting the dedication and commitment of the students, staff and supporters!”

Figure Skating in Harlem honorees

Figure Skating in Harlem honorees b michael and Emmy-nominated sportscaster Andrea Joyce are pictured with celebrity skaters, FSH board of directors, FSH event chairs, co-chairs and honorary chairs (Photo by Seitu Oronde)

The 2013 gala event chairs included Kenneth Chenault, CEO and chairman of American Express and his wife and philanthropist Kathryn Chenault; 2012 honoree Ellen Lowey; Terry J. Lundgren, CEO, chairman of the board, president and director of Macy’s Inc. and his wife, Tina Lundgren.  The event’s honorary chairs included phenomenal actresses Phylicia Rashad, Tamara Tunie, and Cicely Tyson.  Co-chairs included Allison Schneirov Fisch, Candace S. Matthews and Teresa A. Teague.

Among the notable attendees present were actor Federico Castelluccio, Sharon Cohen, Mark-Anthony Edwards, Kenneth Chenault, Kathryn Chenault, David Frei, Frederic Fekkai, Gregory Generet, Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, Ellen Lowey, Terry Lundgren, Tina Lundgren, Star Jones, LuAnn de Lesseps, Rhonda Ross, Allison Schneirov-Fisch, Candace S. Matthews, Jean Shafiroff, Harry Smith, Tamara Tunie and Vera Wang.

Highlights of the evening of elegance included a lovely performance by FSH students who skated to Palladio and Alicia Key’s Girl on Fire as dusk settled in.  Uber designer Vera Wang also took to the ice prior to joining waiting buses that transported all guests over to the Central Park Boathouse for festive lakeside cocktails and dinner.  At the close of the event guests skated off with fabulous gift bags courtesy SG Sportswear and Amway.

Now in its sixteenth season, FSH is the first non-profit organization of its kind, combining the power of education with the discipline of figure skating to transform young lives and help underserved girls achieve academic success, physical health and emotional well-being.  Founded in 1997 by Sharon Cohen, FSH’s vision is to empower every young girl, regardless of her socio-economic background, with the foundational academic, social and leadership skills to achieve her dreams.

Audrey J. Bernard is an established chronicler of Black society and Urban happenings based in the New York City area.

audrey bernard

Audrey J. Bernard