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Can our Olympic skaters master the bead throw?

BRADENTON — Caydee Denney, Jeremy Barrett, Amanda Evora and Mark Ladwig are Olympic figure skaters who can spin, spiral and do a Salchow with the world’s best.

Vying for the gold at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver proved that.

But can they throw beads?

“We’ll find out,” said Joe Miller, general chairman of events for the Hernando DeSoto Historical Society.

On April 24, to be exact.

That’s when Manatee County’s Olympic figure skaters will receive the royal hometown treatment as grand marshals for the DeSoto Historical Society’s 2010 Heritage Festival Parade.

Evora-Ladwig and Denney-Barrett finished 10th and 13th, respectively, in pairs figure skating at the Winter Olympics, but they’ll receive a champions welcome throughout the parade.

“They’re Olympians, they’re from our community and we were all excited to watch them,” Miller said.

“We thought it was important for the community to be able to embrace them in an event that draws the largest crowd in Manatee County.”

Miller said the foursome, who are competing at the World Figure Skating Championships beginning Saturday in Torino, Italy, were happy to join the parade.

“We asked, they said absolutely,” he said. “They feel a real sense of community.”

The skaters will ride in convertibles, and Miller doesn’t anticipate a problem finding drivers.

“We’ll probably have so many volunteers, we might have to hold a lottery,” he joked.