Boston is playing host to the International Skating Union (ISU) World Figure Skating Championships this week, welcoming 200 competitors from around the world to TD Garden. Watch in person or tune into the event to see men’s, women’s, pairs and ice dance competitions March 31 to April 2, with an “Exhibition of Champions” on April 3. Here’s what you need to know before you watch.
1. While the ISU World Championships have taken place in the United States before — most recently in Los Angeles in 2009 — this is Boston’s first time hosting the event.
2. Athletes are coming from 38 countries to compete in Boston at this year’s championships.
3. There are 16 skaters representing the United States in Boston this week. Keep an eye out for crowd favorite Gracie Gold, a Massachusetts native who just placed first at the 2016 United States Championships.
4. The Skating Club of Boston, a nonprofit founded in 1912, helped organize the event this year. The Club provides resources for amateur and professional skaters alike, and event co-runs the Boston Common Frog Pond with Boston’s Parks and Recreation Department.
5. The event organizers are expecting 75,000 visitors to the 2016 Championships — that’s enough to fill TD Garden almost four times!
6. The spot where athletes and their families or coaches anxiously wait for their results — often while being streamed on live TV — is called the “Kiss & Cry Area.”
7. According toBoston Business Journal, organizers anticipate that the Boston economy will see $30 million as a result of hosting the World Championships.
8. In case you wouldn’t have guessed, top ice skater’s training schedules are rigorous. Ashley Wagner, who will be competing as part of the U.S. Team this week, toldEllethat her training includes work both on and off the ice, yoga and outdoor exercise.
9. Mao Asada, who is competing for Japan at this year’s World Championships, holds the top score in the ladies short program under the International Judging System that has been in use since 2004.
10. During last year’s World Championships, which were held in China, the U.S. took home a silver medal in ice dance.