In The Beginning
Our dojo was founded back in 1985 and was called Liverpool School of Martial Arts. It was a community-driven dojo run by Carl Stedmond. For the next 20 years, we built up our dojo, and slowly, it morphed itself into a family. Unfortunately, all great things must come to an end. Due to a lack of demand for martial arts in the early 2000s Liverpool Martial Arts was on the brink of shutting down. Out of Desperation, some of their long-lasting members stepped up to buy and revive the business.
In 2007, Liverpool School of Martial Arts was renamed The Harmony Center. It was a strange name for a martial arts studio, but we thought it was a great reflection of our teachings. Over the next few years, an extensive rebrand was done to the dojo, and a full renovation was done to our unit. These rebrands helped us get noticed by the public, and welcomed many more members to our family.
Over the next five years, The Harmony Center made a name for itself. We had over 100 active members, a roster of over 10 instructors and we were officially recognized by the City of Pickering. In 2012, The Harmony Center grew so much, that we had to move locations and upsize. Within those years, our partners gradually left the company, eventually leaving only one family left, the Ata family.
In 2014 Raymond and Helene Ata were declared full ownership of The Harmony Center. They took the business towards a more children-friendly and family-oriented approach. Capitalizing on their After School Program and Family Classes, the dojo grew exponentially over the next few years. 2019 was our most active year, with camps, field trips, community events, and much more going on. The Harmony Center became more than just a dojo. All our members, instructors, and spectators were welcomed into the family with open arms.
Once the pandemic hit early 2020, we were forced to shut down and move to online classes. It was difficult for everyone, but our members managed to pull through. After 2 years of on and off lockdowns and restrictions, we can confidently say that The Harmony Center successfully survived the pandemic. Since things were starting to open up, our dojo was once again thriving.
Nowadays, we continue to expand our family and build our community. Our future is unknown, but no matter what path we take, The Harmony Center will continue to welcome anyone and everyone to our family, regardless of their situation.