Season 6 premiere of Battle of the Blades rescheduled after COVID-19 suspension

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      Canadian skaters, including some with B.C. connections, are lacing up and preparing to hit the ice in a national charity competition. 

      Production on the series had been suspended, as a precautionary member, on October 7 after a production team member tested positive for COVID-19.

      The season premiere had been scheduled for October 15 but was postponed.

      CBC announced on October 15 that the two-hour live premiere of Season 6 of Battle of the Blades will now be broadcast on Thursday (October 22) at 8 p.m. on CBC TV and CBC Gem.

      The series will be filmed at the CAA Centre in Brampton, Ontario, with a virtual audience.

      Hockey Night in Canada sportscaster Ron MacLean will cohost the series with singer-songwriter and actor Keshia Chanté.

      This series sees NHL, Olympic, and professional hockey players paired up with World and Olympic figure skaters as they compete for a $100,000 donation to their choice of charity.

      Among those in the competition with B.C. connections is Meghan Agosta, a member of the Vancouver Police Department who plays for Canada women’s national ice hockey team, and who is a three-time gold and one-time silver medallist at the Winter Olympics of 2006 Torino, 2010 Vancouver, 2014 Sochi, and 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics respectively.

      Agosta (who was born in Windsor, Ontario) and ice dance medallist Andrew Poje from Waterloo, Ontario, are competing for B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver.

      In addition, Dancing on Ice competitor Carlotta Edwards (who is paired with Kris Versteeg from Lethbridge, Alberta) grew up in Queen Charlotte on Haida Gwaii.

      This season’s eight competing pairs, and their charities, are:

      • Violetta Afanasieva and Anthony Stewart, competing for Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities;

      • Meghan Agosta and Andrew Poje, competing for the BC Children’s Hospital;

      • Jennifer Botterill and Eric Radford, competing for The Canadian Cancer Society;

      • Jessica Campbell (for Do It For Daron) and Asher Hill (for FreedomSchool—Toronto); 

      • Meagan Duhamel (for Sandra Schmirler Foundation) and Wojtek Wolski (for The Hospital for Sick Children’s Patient Amenities Fund);  

      • Carlotta Edwards (for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Calgary and Area) and Kris Versteeg (Opokaa'sin Early Intervention Society);  

      • Vanessa James and Akim Aliu, competing for The Time To Dream Foundation;

      • Kaitlyn Weaver and Bryan Bickell, competing for The Bickell Foundation in support of the MS Society of Canada.

      Judges include Olympic gold medallist Scott Moir, women’s ice hockey Olympic medallist Natalie Spooner (who was the Season 5 runnerup with Poje as a partner), and professional skater Elladj Baldé, as well as champion figure skater Kurt Browning in the role of an elite battle expert.