To all of our friends, family, and patrons over the years, we want to update you on the status of the rink and reminisce the past 42 years.
Rollaero took years to build. Dad would work a full day and then work on the rink after dinner until dark. Dad’s best friend, Ray, a mason, helped lay the bricks. A 70’s newspaper quotes Dad saying, “It is my wife’s dream and my challenge.” He built it from salvaged materials, demolition from various jobs while working as a carpenter. The most notable item repurposed are the wood arches Mom and Dad purchased from the Pallomar Roller Rink, the place our parents first met. Our brother met his wife the same way at Rollaero.
Opening Rollaero provided a place close to home for Mom to continue her passion for competitive figure skating. She was a skating teacher and coached many skaters throughout Southeastern Wisconsin, traveling around for practice time and skating competitions. Under Mom's direction the Rollaero Artistic Skating Club produced many state, regional and national champions. Some skaters continued on to participate in the world championships.
During the COVID closure there was catastrophic damage to the skating floor and it had to be removed. Closing has been a difficult family decision that was not taken lightly, it comes with heavy hearts that we are not reopening.
After 42 years operating Rollaero, our family has fond memories: Jimmy (Dad’s boss) walking the arches as they dangled high above the ground, Dad bending the maple boards to form the rotunda skating floor, Mom cutting and painting the Rollaero sign and silhouettes of skaters for the walls, opening night with teens lined up to the street, Mom organizing Halloween skating competitions, Uncle Adolph collecting tickets and singing at organ sessions, Aunt Marie running the snack bar (reprimanding us when needed) and the opportunity for each of us three kids to be involved. During any given session there was the dice game, red light – green light, conga, bell skate, limbo, bunny hop, shoot-the-duck, races, chicken dance, hokey-pokey, line-dancing during Rapper’s Delight, ladies-choice, couples skate, jam skating, fox trots, waltzes, “tiny bubbles” and all the skaters whose memories will be forever held within the rink's walls. We hope you have great memories of your own.
Our family carries a debt of gratitude for so many people that made the dream a reality. We will forever miss our relatives and friends who have passed and helped to make the rink a success: Dad, Grandma Clara & Grandpa Jim, Uncle Adolph & Aunt Marie, Uncle Gerry, Uncle Iggy & Aunt Corky, Jimmy S, Ray & Jan B, Herb & Joyce H, Bob S, Zimmy, Phil B, Fred S and Julien, you are always in our prayers. With too many people to mention that have helped us along the way, know that our family appreciates and thanks you for your support.
Thanks to the former and current patrons, employees, family and friends for the memories. If Uncle Adolph were here, he would finish it singing, “Good night sweetheart, till we meet tomorrow.” We hope you continue to let the good times roll.
The Miller Family
P.S. Please do not create or contribute to any crowdsource funding in Rollaero’s name.