Oceanic


Rimouski Océanic

Arena Name: Colisée de Rimouski (Colisée Financière Sun Life)
Capacity: 5,062 (4,285 seated)
Built: 1966
Address: 111, 2e rue Ouest, Rimouski, QC, G5L 1P2
Telephone No: (418) 721-5555
Ice Surface Size: Regulation
Franchise Date: 1995-96
QMJHL Championships: 2, Most Recently in 2004-05
Memorial Cup Championships: 1, in 1999-2000
Colours: Navy Blue, Sky Blue, & White
Official Web Site: Oceanic.qc.ca
Unofficial Site:
Tourist Information: Tourisme Rimouski

QMJHL
Colisée de Rimouski
Colisee de Rimouski
What's the Arena Like?
Pour la version français, cliquez-ici.

I have never been to the Colisée de Rimouski. If you have anything to contribute, send it on to email.

Joe Tasca says:
A picturesque city on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River, Rimouski is well worth visiting for anglophones who really want a taste of what French Canada has to offer. Having said that, you need not speak French to get by in this part of the province, as a number of Rimouskoises have a decent command of the English language, which makes the Rimouski experience all the more enjoyable for your average Rhode Islander. (Ed: Joe is from Rhode Island.)

As soon as you hit the parking lot, the first thing you notice about the Colisee de Rimouski is its age. The building is 41 years old, and you can tell by its exterior design that the arena was built in the heart of the 1960's. Beyond the main exntrance is a box office and a remarkably tiny gift store, which was manned by two young girls during my visit, one of whom spoke English.

At a capacity of just over 5,000 patrons, the Colisee has a single bowl of seats. There are 14 rows of seats along the horizontal sides of the rink, and ten rows behind each net. There's actually a concourse above the seating area that extends around the entire rink, which can accomodate standing room only patrons. On this level, there are two small beer stands, as well.

There are a few unique features about the main concourse at the Colisee that struck me. First off, illuminated pictures of all the current Oceanic players are posted throughout the concourse. I've been to a lot of hockey arenas, but never before have I seen individual pictures of the home team plastered around the building's interior.

As strange as it sounds, patrons are not unable to walk completely around the main concourse of the Colisee. Unlike even the most dated hockey area, the locker rooms for both teams (which are on opposite ends of the ice) actually extend onto the main concourse area! As a result, the locker room portions of the main concourse are cordoned off by arena staff, forcing patrons to actually walk inside the arena and behind the team benches to get back to the main concourse. It's actually really neat, because it allows fans to stop for a moment to watch warmups from the team benches without any glass obstructions.

The game experience itself reminds me of that of an NHL arena. If you visit places like Bathurst and Drummondville, the crowds are frantic and boistorous during the entire game. You constantly hear airhorns and random screams from the fans. In Rimouski, the patrons will loudly cheer and boo in unison if given a reason, but the crowd isn't deafeningly vocal throughout the match. Watching a game in Rimouski is very much like watching a game Toronto or Montreal, in that respect. It's a business-like crowd, but make no bones about it: if the game is tied late in the 3rd, the building will become quite loud and the crowd will vocally react to each rush up the ice.

On the whole, the Rimouski experience is distinct and pleasant. The support for the team throughout the city is extraordinary, and the Colisee absolutely reeks of hockey. Granted, it's quite a hike, particularly for those of us here in the States, but if you ever have the opportunity to take in a game in Rimouski, don't hesitate. It's an area where grass roots hockey is alive and well.
Inside the Colisée de Rimouski
Colisee de Rimouski
Future Developments
The Océanic hosted the 2009 Memorial Cup, and a part of their bid was a $6.4 million renovation of the Colisée. The renovations included the installation of 14 corporate boxes, a new video scoreboard, and new team offices. Work began over the summer of 2008 and was complete in time for the Memorial Cup in May of 2009.

How To Get There

From A-20: Exit at Montée Industrielle and proceed north to rue 2E (Second Street). Turn left. The arena will be up ahead at the corner of 2E and St-Louis.
Franchise History
The Océanic franchise is a charter member of the QMJHL from 1969, but they were originally the legendary Sherbrooke Castors (Beavers), playing out of the Palais des Sports. In 1982 the team moved from Sherbrooke to St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, where they played out of the Colisée Isabelle-Brasseur as the St-Jean Castors from 1982 to 1989, and then as the St-Jean Lynx from 1989 to 1995. Low attendance in surburban Montreal led to the team striking out further from home, and they have found huge success and fan support since moving to Rimouski.
Retired Numbers
4 Vincent Lecavalier
9 Jonathan Beaulieu
12 Allan Sirois
39 Brad Richards

Local Rivals
Rimouski's location on the south shore of the St. Lawrence means that few teams are really local, but the Océanic's success over the years has inspired some rivalries with Québec and Baie-Comeau.

Feedback

If anything is incorrect or you have something to add, please e-mail me at email and I'll update the guide.






Copyright © Kevin Jordan 2002-09.
All rights reserved.
Last Revised: June 22, 2009