Lake Placid Skate Camp Review (2016 update)

2016 Lake Placid Skate Camp Review
2014 Lake Placid Skate Camp Review
2013 Lake Placid Skate Camp Review
Lake Placid Adult Skate Camp 2012
A Lesson with Todd Gilles
Part 1 The Lay of the land
Part 2 Getting Started
Part 3 Facilities

Updated for 2016. So here are some notes about stuff that people may find useful.

How to work the locker combinations.
If you went to high school in the US you know how to work the combination on the lockers, but there were a number of non-US students who didn't. Here's how you open your locker. The office will give you a combination of 3 numbers and a locker assignment. To open the locker turn the lock to the right so it goes past the first number twice and stop on the first number the next time. Turn the lock to the left so it passes the second number once and stop on the second number the next time. Turn the lock to the right and stop on the third number. Open the lock by lifting up on the handle.

Lake Placid does not change the combinations, so if you want real security, bring a padlock.

Get a slap watch (still true for 2016)
The rinks have tiny little clocks in them and don't run the big scoreboard clocks day to day. I found a slap watch was useful. I just bought a cheap one and slapped it on over the arm of my jacket when I was skating. Off ice I just wore the watch normally.  The slap feature was really nice, as it would go over  jackets, gloves and wrist guards. (Update) There was no clock at all in the 1980 rink in 2013--so no kidding, you'll need a watch. (I assume it will be fixed, but still. you've been warned) In 2016 there was a clock in the 1980 rink,set to Mountain Time and too small to read the time. You still need a watch.


Bring all the figure skating gear you need, Plus extras (Still true, but with a positive update)
Figure skating is only big in Lake Placid for a few months a year. There's a skating shop across the street from the rink (it's a nice shop if you're looking for adult skating clothes, I've had some good finds) but its skating gear like bunga sleeves, or soakers, or blade guards is whatever they have in stock. Don't expect a lot of selection. Lots, and lots of skating clothes though. (Update 2013--The skate shop RENTS costumes if you want to perform in the adult ice show, but didn't bring a costume. In adult sizes too! And the ones I saw were lovely. Plus a friend scored a couple of men's costumes.) However, they have awider stock in 2016 including soakers, guards,and tights, and protective gear. Also Zuca inserts. Costs were very reasonable!

Smart Phones
(Updated for 2013)  I saw lots of people mark up their paper schedules with notes about their lesson times, and photograph the results, then use the photograph on their phone rather than carry the paper schedule around. I used a scanner program on my iPhone instead, and that was better. If you just want to keep the schedule on your phone, the pdf the rink sends out the week before, can be opened in the Nook app, and you can keep notes on it. Also, the rink now has WiFi for guests. )
By 2016 people had gone back to paper. Maybe people dropped their phones on the ice?

If you don't have one now, it's really good to have a smart phone when you're in LP.  Unlike the rest of the US where you can't turn a corner without seeing a TV screen with the news on it, the LP rinks run like they were in the 80's. Totally unwired. A friend of mine called this 'upstate mentality'. (changed, the rink has WiFi in 2013) If you want to keep up with the outside world while you're in the rink, get a smart phone. It's hurricane season in the August class, if you live near a hurricane zone, you'll really wish you had one so you can check progress of any storms. Ditto the Virginia Earthquake of 2011.

A Towel in the Skate Bag is a good idea
I was skating 5 hours a day and was having a hard time keeping my boots dry. Then I saw a couple of the skaters set their boots on a towel under the benches to let them air out while they went to lunch. Good idea. I actually had to take my boots apart and remove the insoles to get them dry every day. The lockers are ventilated, but it takes all night for the boots to dry out.