Niagara Gazette

March 3, 2014

Lockport's Skateland behind in tax payments, faces foreclosure

Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — LOCKPORT — The owners of Skateland Family Fun Center on Lincoln Avenue announced Sunday that they will be facing foreclosure on the business unless they can come up with a sizable city property tax payment which is due by May.

Lori Ferraro, who owns the skating complex with husband Brian, said financial strains such as liability insurance, payroll and utilities have made it difficult to balance while maintaining family friendly prices.

Property taxes on the nearly 30-year-old business are behind by two years in addition to the current year.

The property has been listed for sale in the past, and was recently listed again.

Despite financial issues, Ferraro says business has grown over the past two years.

“With the recent closure of the Eastern Hills Skating Center, we've seen an increase in business, people coming from Amherst and Clarence who don't mind making the 20-minute drive to skate,” Ferraro said.

A post on the business' Facebook page announcing the likelihood of foreclosure drew plenty of responses from current and former Lockport residents with ideas to come up with the money.

Ferraro said she's grateful for the community support.

“We just have to remind everyone that we're not a non-profit organization, and we can't accept tax-deductible donations,” Ferraro said.

The Ferraros would prefer to keep and run Skateland indefinitely.

“We pride ourselves on having a safe, supervised place for kids to have fun and socialize in a family-friendly setting,” Ferraro said.