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History of the Cortland Figure Skating Club

The Cortland Figure Skating Club was founded in 1973 by Olive Walsh. In October of that year the SUNY Park Center indoor ice rink opened on the SUNY Cortland campus, giving Cortland residents the privilege of enjoying the sport of figure skating under ideal conditions for the first time ever.

Mrs. Walsh, who had spent the winters of her youth figure skating in Ottawa, Canada, approached the Cortland County Youth and Recreation Department for help in introducing the sport to area residents. From this meeting came the first Christmas season "Holiday on Ice" program. Free skating sessions were offered to the public with instruction available from Olive Walsh, Gloria Ackroyd, Jean Gonino, and Evelyn McAllister.

"Holiday on Ice" was a great success. On the last day, participants were asked if they would like to start a figure skating club. The result was a resounding “yes” with 40 people forming the charter group of the Cortland Figure Skating


Now, as we look towards the next 50 years, The Cortland Figure Skating Club looks to continue the tradition of figure skating with club members hailing from Binghamton to Syracuse ranging from age 6 to adult, and a continued passion to teach the sport to over 75 aspiring skaters in our Learn to Skate and Aspire Programs!

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