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About 250 ice skaters from the eastern United States and Canada are expected to participate in a non-qualifying competition this weekend at Niagara University, as a prelude to next week's 1998 North Atlantic Skating Championships there.

The non-qualifying event is scheduled Saturday and Sunday in the Niagara University ice complex. The 1998 North Atlantic Regional Skating Championships, hosted by the Niagara University Skating Club and the Amherst Skating Club, will be held from Tuesday through Nov. 1.

Caryn Kadavy, 1993 national professional champion and U.S. bronze medalist, will skate in a solo performance during an opening ceremony from 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday. Professional skater Chris Conte, a member of "The Next Ice Age" skating show, also will perform during that ceremony.

More than 350 athletes are expected to compete in freestyle, pairs, dance, and figures in the regional championships, a qualifier for competition in the U.S. Nationals or Junior Olympics. Tickets for the opening ceremony and for the competitive events will be available at the door.

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