PeeWee Arena Sault Ste. Marie

PeeWee Arena

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Our History

The 1960s was an era of great change in our ways of thinking and behaving, and one of the fastest growing organizations in our city was the Soo Pee Wee Hockey League. We started out by renting ice time at the Memorial Gardens to teach basic hockey and skating skills. With the scarcity of time slots and the rapid increase in applicants, the organization was forced to move to the Central Park rink to handle the growing number of childen. The problems of unreliable weather and time limitations to scheduling and needed expansion were threatening collapse of the organization. A solution was desperately needed.

A handful of individuals, with a vision about an arena for young people, held regular meetings in King Edward School, and later King George School, in order to plan how to achieve this objective. Others promised material, all types of heavy and light equipment, professional advice and skills and just plain support in any way that was required.

Bank loans were signed by our supporters and land was purchased from Lorne Palmer of Soo Dairies. With the prospect of a real arena in sight, a directorate of ten was selected to manage the corporation.

Volunteer labour formed a major part of the construction force and was entirely responsible for the operation of the arena during its initial year of operation. The first hired employee was engaged in October 1968 and in November 1972, the first full time manager was hired.

Today we have fourteen hired employees, though some are only part time workers. A considerable amount of volunteer work is still performed. Board members and organizers of special events are all volunteers in order that our rink will continue to be a viable non-profit organization.

The arena canteen was opened in 1967 and was managed and operated until 1973 by a group of women associated with the arena. The names of those women, along with the men involved in the building of the arena, were added to the rink's Honour Roll at our 25th Anniversary on June 20, 1992.

Historical Photo Collage
Historical Photo Collage

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