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Competitions


ARENA GARDENS  

  • John Merlin from Huys, Belgium was the first recorded person to invent a roller skate, doing so in the 1760s in London, England.
  • The First official U.S. Amateur Speed Skating Championship races was held April 2-4, 1937 at the Arena Gardens rink in Detroit, Michigan. 
  • The First Figures Championship was held at the Arena Gardens rink in Detroit, Michigan, in 1939. (The First Dance Championship was held at the Mineola Rink, Mineola, NY, in 1939)
  • In May 1949, the Arena Gardens held a three day Michigan Championship with 1328 participants, which was a 20% increase from the previous year.
  • Roller skaters were included in the 1978 Sports Act and have participated in the Pan Am Games since 1979.
  • Transcontinental Roller Derby was formed by Leo A. Seltzer in 1935.