Stars on Ice is halfway through its 24-city, six-week tour celebrating the best of U.S. Olympic figure skating — and the crowds have been big and boisterous at each stop, especially in cities like Detroit, sold-out Boston and rowdy Newark. And while Nathan Chen‘s backflips, Jason Brown‘s showmanship and ice dancers Madison Chock and Evan Bates‘ mesmerizing chemistry has fans loving the shows, the skaters are also experiencing some amazing moments off of the ice.
One night before their show in Greensboro, North Carolina, the entire cast was treated to a private box to see Elton John‘s farewell tour. The entire concert was thrilling, but the live shout-out Chen, 23, received from Sir Elton, 75, in honor of his gold medal performance at the Beijing Olympics — which was set to “Rocket Man” — is the stuff dreams are made of.
Along the road, these Olympic medalists got to cheer for other great athletes at both a New Jersey Devils hockey game and a Cleveland Guardians baseball game. They became kids again at Hershey Park in Pennsylvania and Disney World in Florida (yes, after the Olympics they all still agree “It’s a Small World” after all) and were among the first performers in the world to christen the new UBS Arena in Long Island, New York — one week after the Eagles performed their greatest hits in the same venue.
With half of their American tour still ahead of them, the skaters are looking forward to homecomings for Chen, Brown and Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier in Salt Lake City, Chicago and Phoenix, respectively. The theme for this year’s show is “The Journey,” and it seems as though the journey has been magical for both fans and the skaters alike.