The Scottsdale Martial Arts Center, Inc. was started in 1976 under the name of Arizona Wado Karate. The school was originally located in Mesa and was owned and operated by Sensei Marlon Moore. In the mid 80's Marlon Moore came down with an illness and turned over operations to his senior student, Ray Hughes. Ray Hughes started a second school in Scottsdale in 1986 and operated both programs under that name for a time until Sensei Moore returned.
Ray's Scottsdale program started originally at the Scottsdale YMCA. A few months later he opened the main school in the Scottsdale Airpark, an industrial area not far from the YMCA. He operated both programs for 16 years until he handed the YMCA program over to one of his students.
In 1993 Ray changed the school from a karate only school to a multiple art facility. This change allowed the center to expand its services, allowing more people of every age and level of experience the opportunity to explore the modern benefits of the martial arts. Though it was not uncommon to see an occasional school host two arts, this school was unique in that it offered 10 different arts to the general public. The name of the school was changed at that time to reflect its new direction, its present name Scottsdale Martial Arts Center, Inc.
In 1998, because of the school's continued growth, it became apparent that a new facility was needed. Tired of renting and all the problems that go with it, Ray started the process to fulfill a lifelong dream to design and build his own facility. He formed a group of individuals from the school that shared his vision. These individuals, fathers of children in the karate program, were experts in their fields of finance, law, and real estate. Together they came up with a plan to develop and build Scottsdale's premier martial arts center. After many ups and downs and almost four years to the date, the same amount of time it takes an adult to reach a traditional black belt, the doors of the Scottsdale Martial Arts Center, Inc. opened on September 5, 2002. This was a great accomplishment. Even today, it is extremely rare for a martial art school to own its own facility.
Ray Hughes will always be in debt to Jeff Holmes of Holmes & Associates, Steve Bodeman of Daum Realty, and Mike Withey of Withey Morris Attorneys at Law for their help to bring this dream of building and owning his own martial arts school to fruition. Domo arigato gozaimashita!
Today, Scottsdale Martial Arts Center, Inc. is Scottsdale's premier martial arts center. Not only is it the oldest martial arts school in Scottsdale, it also offers a wider range of arts for the public to choose from. It uses the latest technology in video and audio equipment to benefit the students in a state of the art facility that has three separate training floors, locker rooms with showers, and a play room for the siblings. All of which is presented in a traditional format.
The Scottsdale Martial Arts Center, Inc. welcomes you.