The Original Broadmoor World Arena
A HISTORY OF EXCELLENCE ON ICE
The Original Broadmoor World Arena
The Broadmoor World Arena was a pioneering skating rink and hockey arena located at The Broadmoor on the resort grounds. Originally built as an enclosed riding academy in 1930, the building was later converted to an ice arena. During the mid-1930's America's love affair with the incredible beauty of skating had taken off. Hollywood glamorized it in Sonja Henie films, while traveling ice shows packed in eager crowds at major arenas throughout the country. In 1938, after seeing Sonja Henie skate, the hotel owner, Spencer Penrose devised a plan to convert the riding academy into the Broadmoor Ice Palace. Conversion took a mere 24 days and $200,000. One hundred tons of ice was frozen to make up the 185' by 85' surface. Steam pipes were installed around the edges of the rink to keep spectators warm. Tables were placed there, where waiters wearing skates, delivered drinks and snacks. The Ice Palace opened January 1938.
The Pikes Peak Figure Club was formed at almost the same time. That very first year, the club presented ice shows for conventions held at the Broadmoor, staged the first of its annual summer ice revues, and celebrated the holiday season with a skating extravaganza. In the summer revue, the ice surface was painted to look like a Navajo rug. Tepees were set up at one end of the rink, and real bonfires were ignited. Over time, presentations such as this became known as the most "professional" amateur ice shows in the world. In 1948, the club changed its name to the Broadmoor Skating Club. In its sixty year history, the Broadmoor Skating Club has had eight members medal at the Olympics. Three of them won gold: Hayes Alan Jenkins 1956, David Jenkins 1960 and Peggy Fleming 1968
In the summer of 1945, the world-class coach Edi Scholdan came to the Broadmoor. Many national and international skaters arrived to train under Scholdan. But on February 15, 1961 he and all of the US World Skating Team lost their lives in an airplane crash in Brussels Belgium. They were on their way to the 1961 World Figure Skating Championship in Prague, Czechoslovakia when the tragedy occurred. Eight individuals were members of the Broadmoor Skating Club; Edi Scholdan (coach) and his son Jimmy, Stephanie and Sharon Westerfeld, Greg and Nathalie Kelley and Laurie and William Hickox.
The Broadmoor Skating Club created a marble memorial to the members of the Broadmoor Skating Club who lost their lives. It was dedicated February 15, 1964 and the Ice Palace was renamed the Broadmoor World Arena. The memorial represents a skate blade and functions as a bench. It is set beside the lake in front of the location of the World Arena where Edi and the skaters made a habit to rest between lessons and practice sessions.
Also the original home of the Colorado College Tigers hockey team, the arena was the site of the first NCAA Hockey Championships, “The Frozen Four”. It hosted the championship for ten consecutive years (1948-1957) and once more, in 1969. In 1950 Colorado College won for the first time. The arena also served as host to the International Ice Hockey Federation World Championships in 1962 and many international invitational competitions.
In 1993, the Broadmoor announced that it would be closing the arena to make room for a $27 million expansion of the resort. It closed in March 1994. The last major event held at the arena was the 1994 World Junior Figure Skating Championships. Until was is razed in April 1994, the ice arena was the training ground for World and Olympic champions as well as the site of hockey games, ice shows, and curling events, five World Figure Skating Championships, six U.S. Figure Skating Championships and three National Sports Festivals.
Today, The Broadmoor World Arena is located approximately three miles from the resort. When the new facility opened in 1998, it was called The Colorado Springs World Arena. The name returned to The Broadmoor World Arena in 2014. The adjacent World Arena Ice Hall is a sanctioned training facility for the United States Olympic Committee. The Broadmoor World Arena is a multi-use facility that hosts Colorado College hockey, large events, traveling presentations and national productions, as well as figure skating competitions throughout the year. The Ice Hall is home to The Broadmoor Skating Club, as well as the curling club. USA Hockey is located across the street and uses the facility for development and team selection.
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