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Mr Oaks Park ~ Robert Bollinger

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Benefactor Oaks Park Association

This site is a remembrance of Robert and is an effort to keep his ideas of family entertainment alive. In addition, it documents some of his business interests.

Below is clarification of "The Oaks" ownership based on Robert's personal papers and an oral history by the University of Indiana.

Oregon Water Power Railroad Co. built / operated 1904 - 1909.
  See 50 Yrs Beneath for more detail
United Amusement Company operated 1909 to circa 1925
Mr. John Cordray purchased circa 1925
Mrs. Cordray inherited in 1925
Edward Bollinger purchased circa 1925
Robert helped his father (Edward) purchase the land in 1943
  Their "gentleman's agreement" was not recognized at the time of Edward's passing; however, Robert managed the park.
Robert Bollinger purchased from Elizabeth Bollinger
  Final payment made circa 1951 - per income tax records
Oaks Park Association took control 1985
OPA is a non-profit created by R Bollinger to perpetuate the entity
Robert firmly believed families who play together stay together.

He also understood the session skater paid the bills (as documented in the University of Indiana's Oral History) yet had the foresight to provide programs for skaters to develop higher skill-set. He gave skaters a challenge and reason to keep returning to skate.

Based on the size of Oaks, he determined a teaching staff of 10 could be supported without interfering with the operation of Oaks. Balancing practice time, lessons, private parties, and sessions worked well under Robert's direction. He supported his teaching staff by not allowing outside staff to teach at Oaks during public sessions.

The Oaks Rink was a Grand Lady because of its size and the style of management.

He has been honored by several associations including:

Oaks Amusement Park
  Recognized as Benefactor
The National Carousel Association
  "Bob Bollinger Award" plaque created
National Museum of Roller Skating
  Trustee Emeritus (Founding) Title bestowed
  Annual Ticket Seller's Award named in his honor
Roller Skating Association
  Lifetime Achievement Award renamed in his honor

 

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Updated 08.06.2015 |