March Madness. 1984.

For those collectors fortunate enough to have attended the 1984 World Figure Skating Championships in Canada’s capital of Ottawa, there was no better event for pin trading. All around the Ottawa Civic Centre, venue for the event, both large and small groups of collectors could be found huddled together negotiating and dealing in a unique brand of March Madness. Pin trading was truly at its zenith—and was a magical time that never occurred again.

The five pins shown in Gallery No. 1 were sold at the event, while the four shown in Gallery No. 2 were special-issue versions given only to competitors, officials, or those who served in some capacity with the event. It is believed that the nine pins shown are the total issued to commemorate the championship. (Not considered or included are pins issued by any sponsor or service partner of the championships, such as Canadian or U.S. television networks. Pins of this type were instead made to commemorate the third party’s participation in the event and were not produced for or issued by the event itself.)

There was high excitement and pin trading was at its zenith—a truly magical time in figure skating pin collecting…

First up are the three main event logo pins—each in cloisonné—one a large, rectangular version and two small, circular cutout versions. The pins feature the then-logo of the Canadian Figure Skating Association (CFSA, or today called Skate Canada), an abstract maple leaf and skate blade design that was introduced around the time of the World Championships. On all pins, the event is noted as either “World’s 84 Ottawa” or “1984 World’s Ottawa” in varying arrangements. Note that the two smaller pins are reverse images of one another. Next is a simple stickpin in silver metal in relief issued by the City of Ottawa and featuring the Shield of the Arms of the city at its center superimposed over a skate blade. Finally, there is an enamel pin that commemorates the compulsory figures event, held at a sports facility in the nearby City of Nepean. The City of Ottawa pin was not popular, and on the last day of the World Championships, it was placed on sale for $1 Canadian (approximately 75 cents U.S. at the time.)

1984 World Championships Gallery No. 1

  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.
  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.
  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.
  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.

Collectors collect. And during the 1984 World Championships, it was many a collector’s mission to acquire all the special-issue pins that were given only to event officials, competitors, and others. Only a lucky few walked away with all of them. The first pin, likely the most desirable, is similar in design to the main logo pin sold at the event and is executed in cloisonné with a striking blue background and a raised maple leaf logo that creates dimension. Next are two nearly identical pins that are denoted differently than the other pins, using the words “A Beautiful World’s.” Both are cloisonné, the difference between the two resting in the maple leaf logo design: the second version shown features an additional outline around the leaf. Last of the special-issue pins is one connected with the event organizing committee. Two tiers of “hanging” elements—the City of Ottawa Shield of the Arms and a skate boot and blade—make the pin unusual in both shape and design. It was the most difficult pin to acquire at the event, likely produced in only a small quantity, and is a combination of metal and cloisonné.

1984 World Championships Gallery No. 2

  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.
  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.
  • Copyright-protected image. Do not download or use without express written consent of the copyright holder.

The 1984 World Championships were well-commemorated with lapel pins, perhaps the most of any world event during the past 30-plus years.

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