Lakeside’s programming, activities and events are the heart and soul of our facility, and Shanley Pascal, our Recreation Manager, is the woman responsible for bringing it all to life. With a figure skating background, she’s captivating to watch on the ice, but behind-the-scenes is where the real work happens. Shanley works tirelessly to plan and execute all of Lakeside’s programming and activities, from Skate School and Spring Break Programs to Roller Hockey and Yoga. Below, we sat down with Shanley to get to know more about her day-to-day, and trust us, she’s up to a lot more than twirling on the rink.
How did you first become acquainted with The LeFrak Center at Lakeside?
In 2013, I was listed as the Director of the Lakeside Skating School on a proposal from another company to operate the facility. Upsilon Ventures ultimately took over the property and I moved on to work for a film distribution company located on Prospect Park West.
While I was there, I was gifted a folding bike to ride to Lakeside on Tuesday lunch breaks to skate, so in a way it’s like I’ve been connected to this rink since long before I started working here!
How did you become involved with ice skating and did you always plan to make a career of it?
When I was little, my mom made a deal with me that I could pick whatever sport I liked, but I had to do something to be active. I took dance and gymnastics but neither stuck, so I tried figure skating next (it was the 90s so we watched a lot of it on TV).
I was the kind of kid who would climb furniture just to jump off of it, so it was the perfect fit! I definitely never thought it would be a career, but I feel lucky every day that I get to work with something I really love.
Will this be your first season leading spring and summer recreation at Lakeside? Which activity are you most excited to launch?
Yes, and I’m really excited for roller skating! I’ve been watching tons of YouTube videos online and am constantly amazed with how similar artistic roller skating is to figure skating on ice. I also went to Lola’s Dreamland Roller Disco once last year and had a blast; the skaters who show up to that event are extremely talented and fun to watch.