Pink, blue and white illustration of Papa Smurf and Smurfette on ice skates on blue ice with a white background and white text outlined in black
In the early 1980s, the Smurfs were featured as part of the the Ice Capades, a popular traveling ice show. The Smurfs began as a Belgian comic created by the artist Peyo and expanded over time into advertising, toys, television, and film. The cartoon debuted on American television in 1981 and quickly gained popularity around the country.
The Ice Capades originated in Pennsylvania in 1940. Characters were played by a number of professional figure skaters and former Olympians. As professional skating became more popular, athletes began to gravitate toward careers as professional skaters instead of performers. This led to the ice show’s eventual decline in popularity in the late 1980s, and the last show was performed in the mid 1990s.
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