Lake Placid Soccer Centre celebrates 40 years of fun and education

LAKE PLACID – Lake Placid Soccer Centre is celebrating its 40th anniversary of summer youth soccer camps Thursday, Aug. 11, and is starting a search for all former overnight and day campers.

“We will organize and operate three weeks of soccer camps,” said Michael McGlynn, one of two co-founders. “We are inviting former staff and campers to our official celebration event Thursday, Aug. 11 after camps are wrapped up. Many of our former international staff members are joining us in Lake Placid for week long reunion events.”

“For the past 39 years we have had a goal to provide a first-class educational soccer experience anchored by a staff made up of former World Cup, professional players and coaches, top college and high school coaches and a caring off-field staff,” added Larry McFaddin, who co-founded the camp in 1976. “Our staff all share the passion of teaching and helping young soccer players learn and progress, while keeping the fun of soccer as a critical component of the camp experience.”

Lake Placid Soccer Centre has had more than 70,000 campers attend the camp as either overnight, sleep away students or day, commuter campers. Many of the camp alumni have gone on to successful playing and coaching careers, including former FIFA Women’s Player of the Year Abby Wambach of Rochester. Wambach, who holds the record for most career international goals, attended the camp for two years when she was 13 and 14.

Lake Placid Soccer Centre also created and organized the annual Soccer America Dawn to Dark Festival, and the Adult Indoor Soccer Tournament. The 24-year-old indoor tournament had 68 teams and more than 1,200 participants, including U.S. women’s team captain Kristine Lilly, who is the most ‘capped’ player of all time with 352 appearances for Team USA.

“It has been worthwhile and satisfying for me personally to see the effect the camp has been able and continues to bring to young American players,” said Alfred Galustian, the third LPSC Director. “All the international staff from Europe, Asia, Australia and South America we have invited to present to the young campers have offered a unique athletic experience. Also my wife and two children have had a lifetime of memories together over the years.”

Jimmy Galustian first attended camp as a 7 year old in 1984 and over the years has gone from a camper to counselor to assistant coach and finally a full camp coach.

“It is awesome to see so many great people every year,” he said. “Coaching kids at beautiful facilities as a coach is the best. I cannot wait until my own kids are campers soon.”

Lake Placid Soccer Centre has had more than 800 staff members over the years with the largest single week of more than 650 campers at St. Lawrence University in 2002 when 65 Australian parents and kids, 50 young Japanese development coaches and more than 100 staff members led a busy week.

Stuart Hemsley first coached at LPSC in 1986. Now he is the boys high school varsity coach in his adopted home of Lake Placid where he manages the Wildwood Motel. Hemsley is the Director of the LPSC Lake Placid Day Camp each summer.

“I can honestly say the camp has had the most profound effect on my life as I moved to the USA,” Hemsley said. “I have made lifelong friendships and met world class players and coaches who continually share their knowledge on and off the field as well as the thousands of players whom we have treated like our own. There is no better place to be every summer.”

“In the Rochester region alone we have over 5,000 camp alumni who used to come in bus loads to camp each summer,” McGlynn said. “Now we often get children at soccer camp whose parents attended camp as a young soccer athlete. Our camp program and curriculum are always at the cutting edge and it is great to know we have helped soccer grow over the years in North America.”

Find out more about the Lake Placid Soccer Centre 40th anniversary celebration at