Southampton Coliseum (phot by Jordan MacKinnon)

40th Birthday Planned For Southampton Coliseum

A trip down memory lane is being planned as one of the historic buildings in Saugeen Shores turns 40.

The full day of events is being planned for November 4 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the opening of the Southampton Coliseum.

Organizing committee member Hardy Henry drove the Zamboni at the Coliseum for 35 years and says they want the community to come out and celebrate the milestone and share their memories of the Coliseum.

He says it was always special for him to be able to go to work every day and watch Southampton’s youth grow up.

“To see those adults now, and they tell me stories of what went on [at the Coliseum] and how I helped them out growing up, to be a good person and to help everybody and just enjoy life,” says Henry. “That’s what it’s all about.”

The day is being highlighted by an alumni hockey game featuring the Jr. D Southampton Mariners, who played out of the Coliseum in the late 70s and early 80s.

Saugeen Shores Councillor Don Matheson played five seasons for the Mariners and says the invitation is out to all who were involved with the team to come out and go for one more skate with their teammates.

Matheson says there’s plenty of memories at the Coliseum, but what stands out to him is when he was behind the bench for the 2009 WOAA Senior Hockey championship series, when the Saugeen Shores Winterhawks were forced to move to the Coliseum for the final series.

The Winterhawks captured their first-ever championship on the Coliseum ice in front of an overflowing crowd and Matheson says it was a special moment.

“Oh, I still get goosebumps thinking about that, going in [to the Coliseum], the place was packed, it just shows how big of a hockey town Saugeen Shores is in general, and Southampton in particular,” says Matheson. “The people there love it.”