#ImmigrationMatters in
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

A skating club in Charlottetown on the verge of closing is revived by the enthusiastic participation of the Chinese community.

Reviving Charlottetown’s skating club

Reviving Charlottetown’s skating club

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Transcript: “Immigration Matters in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island”

Video length: 2 minutes, 31 seconds

Piano and strings music plays throughout the video.

The video opens with view from above of the bay of Charlottetown, with waves hitting the rocks. A street full of colourful houses and the tower of a church is shown.

Text displays: “Immigration Matters in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island”

Old photos of groups of young skaters are shown.

Amy: The Charlottetown Skating Club has been in operation for close to 60 years.

Amy looks up toward the ice rink. Amy is walking near the ice rink, talking to someone.

Text displays: “Amy MacMillan, Former President, Charlottetown Skating Club”

Amy: Looking back, when I grew up in the club, things weren’t as expensive.

Children get on the ice. A young hockey team skates on the ice. Teenage figure skaters practise on the ice. A poster is shown that reads “Charlottetown Skating Club”.

Amy: Ice costs, or the registration fees, weren’t as expensive and, probably 10 years ago, there were new sports that came in, that became popular, and so the cost of ice time was rising, and so we had to increase registration fees so we could cover our costs of the skating programs.

An empty arena hallway, empty bleachers and an empty ice rink is shown.

Amy: It was probably about 8 or 9 years ago that the club really had a low point in our registration numbers.

The scene fades to black.

Anne Marie is nodding and talking to someone out of frame.

Text displays: “Anne Marie Hennessey, CanSkate Coordinator, Charlottetown Skating Club”

Anne Marie: We started having conversations about what we were going to do, because we didn’t want to have another year like this.

A Zamboni cleans the empty ice rink.

Richard, carrying his infant daughter, walks into a grocery store. He greets Anne Marie.

Anne Marie: One of the members in our junior program, their parents own an Asian market.

Text displays: “Richard Yu, Owner, TopFresh Asian Grocery”

Richard is talking to Anne Marie at the store. Anne Marie is listening attentively.

Anne Marie: He came to us, and asked more information about the CanSkate program, and in those conversations, Rich had suggested that we do a registration at his store.

The facade of the Asian grocery store is shown.

The scene fades to black.

Series of archive photos: a woman helps another woman register. Anne Marie looks at registration forms. A group of people pose for a photo.

Anne Marie: It was overwhelming. We weren’t really prepared for the numbers that we got. They just kept coming through the door. They wanted to skate the next day.

Anne Marie is talking and showing us around the store. People are doing their groceries. Anne Marie is talking and laughing in the driver’s seat of a car.

Anne Marie (laughing): I texted my husband, I’m like, “You’ve got to drive by. There’s a lineup of people to register for skating!” The scene fades to black.

The ice rink is full of young skaters. Anne Marie is talking to a colleague and pointing at the ice rink, smiling.

Anne Marie: Since then, our numbers have been full every year. We were just overwhelmed with the number of people that wanted to learn to skate.

A young boy cheerfully runs up toward a table full of name badges. He picks up his badge and walks off. A young girl, accompanied by her mother, picks up her own badge.

JD is skating with one of his students.

Text displays: “JD Gilmour, Coach, Charlottetown Skating Club”

JD is watching the ice rink. JD is skating backwards.

JD: We’ve had an overwhelming influx of skaters into our club and to see them so engaged and watch them fall in love with the sport, it’s kind of done the same thing for me all over again. I feel like I’m falling back in love with skating.

The scene fades to black.

Daniel is spinning around and jumping on his skates.

Text displays: “Daniel Yang, skater, Charlottetown Skating Club”

JD holds Daniel upright on the ice. Daniel spins on one skate.

JD: Daniel’s one of the most hard-working kids that I’ve ever worked with, and I think that that’s really had a positive impact on the other skaters because they see him working hard, and they see him excelling and improving, and so he’s kind of inspired them to get into gear a little bit.

Daniel skates across the ice rink with speed. Daniel does a jump and lands on one skate. Daniel smiles at JD.

JD and Daniel skate around the ice, talking and laughing. Daniel masters a skating spin on the ice.

JD: We see him, you know, moving up through the competitive ranks pretty fast, and I know it’s his goal to skate at nationals and maybe to represent Canada, and I think he could do it if he keeps on the way he’s going.

Two mothers are looking toward the ice rink. A young girl is learning to skate. Two young children walk on the ice with hesitation. A young skater does a small jump. A parent waves to his son.

JD: For a lot of newcomers, I think, when they first get here, it’s their first experience with snow, their first experience with ice, and it’s a little bit of a shock when they first get here. It’s cold, it’s wet, it’s uncomfortable, and they see the joy that Canadians have when they get on the ice. I think to a lot of newcomers, it’s a big part of what it means to be Canadian.

Richard, with his family, is laughing. A diverse group of young skaters are taking a group photo on the ice.

An aerial shot of the Charlottetown bay is shown.

The scene fades to black.

Text displays: “Immigrants enrich our communities.”

The scene fades to black.

Text displays: “Share your story #ImmigrationMatters; Facebook: @CitCanada; Twitter: @CitImmCanada; Instagram: @CitImmCanada”

The scene fades to black.

Text displays: Canada.ca/immigration-matters

The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada corporate signature is shown, along with the copyright message, “Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, 2019”, followed by the Canada wordmark.

Immigration profile: Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

Quick facts:

  • Immigrants in Charlottetown represent nearly 10% of the population.
  • China is the biggest source country of immigrants to Charlottetown, followed by the United Kingdom and the United States.
  • Over three-quarters of immigrants who came to Charlottetown between 1980 and 2016 were economic immigrants, while 12% were sponsored by family and 12% were refugees.

Did you know?

  • The most common non-official languages spoken in Charlottetown are Mandarin, Arabic and Dutch.

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