Former Arenas of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League
This is by no means a complete directory or listing, it's just a photo gallery of the various former QMJHL arenas that I've happened to see in my travels around this great country, along with brief descriptions/explanations.
Quebec Major Junior Hockey League
Aréna Marcel Bédard
Former Home of the Beauport Harfangs
In 1985, faced with dwindling crowds and interest in the face of competition from the NHL, the original Québec Remparts packed up shop and moved down to Longueuil, leaving the capital region without junior hockey for the first time in recent memory. The league, for obvious reasons, wanted a team back in the capital, but to just re-place a team at the Colisée would have been a futile exercise, and so instead an expansion team was granted in 1990 to the eastern Québec suburb of Beauport, called the Harfangs (snow owls). The Harfangs drew well enough in the tiny Marcel Bédard Arena, which was never really a major junior rink to begin with as it has a small capacity and poor facilities. In 1997, with the Nordiques having left town and no real competition save the IHL (which doesn't count anyway), Harfangs ownership decided to resurrect the Remparts name and moved to PEPS on the Université Laval campus, and then finally back to the Colisée in 1999. The arena in Beauport today still hosts youth hockey, and there is no trace that such a small and inadequate arena hosted the Q for more than half of the 1990s.
Water Street Arena (Si Miller Arena)
Former Home of the Cornwall Royals
The Water Street Arena, also known as Si Miller Arena after the city of Cornwall's long-serving Director of Parks and Recreation, was the original home of the QMJHL Royals from 1969 to 1976. The arena was built in 1936 and holds about 1,500. It is a tremendously charming and colourful building with great character, from the yellow support columns to the wooden seats. The Royals moved across the street to the new Civic Complex in 1976.
Cornwall Royals - Cornwall Civic Complex
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Occasional Home of the Halifax Mooseheads
Halifax Forum was built in 1928 and was the main arena in the city of Halifax before the construction of the Metro Centre in 1978. Located on a busy residential street, the red-brick arena has never been renovated and features many old-school arena quirks, including support columns and Bauhaus-style factory windows along the top of the building. The Forum has never been the official home of the Mooseheads but is used by the team occasionally when the Metro Centre is unavailable. Seating capacity is about 5,000 and is laid out in a U-shape.
Tim Hortons Sportsplex
Moncton, New Brunswick
Occasional Home of the Moncton Wildcats
The Tim Hortons Sportsplex is a relatively pedestrian new four-plex arena in Moncton that has been used on occasion by the Moncton Wildcats when the Coliseum is unavailable. Capacity is about 1,500. The sports complex is built on former railway land near the Coliseum.
Montreal Red White & Blue - Montreal Forum
Maurice Richard Arena
Former Home of the Montreal Juniors & Rocket
The Maurice Richard Arena is a small, circular building located on the grounds of Olympic Park, just down the street from Olympic Stadium. The building was first used by the QMJHL for the 1978-79 season, when low attendance meant that the Montreal Juniors moved out of the Forum. The next season, they moved on again to Paul Sauvé Arena and Maurice Richard was unused by the league again until the Montreal Rocket came to town. The Rocket played at Maurice Richard for their first two seasons before the team moved into the Bell Centre permanently, and ultimately to Charlottetown. The Maurice Richard Arena also hosted boxing and wrestling during the 1976 Summer Olympics. The layout of the arena is unusual, with a circular concourse under the seats and rounded seats reaching up to a dark blue roof. There is also no centre scoreclock.
Former Home of the Montreal Rocket
The Montréal Rocket are rightly remembered as a colossal failure in the city of Montréal. The team had two homes during their stay in the city, playing at the Bell Centre (also home of the NHL's Montréal Canadiens) for all of 2001-02 and 2002-03. It was also a part-time home for the team between 1999 and 2001, although they also played then at the smaller Maurice Richard Arena. They are obviously now the P.E.I. Rocket.
Québec City, Québec
Former Home of the Québec Remparts
The Pavillon de l'éducation physique et des sports de l'Université Laval, or PEPS for short, is a sports complex located on the campus of the Université Laval in Québec City. The original Québec Remparts folded in 1985, but in 1997 the Beauport Harfangs, who played in suburban Québec City, decided to move back downtown and resume operations under the old name. However, the Colisée, where the original team had played, was booked up with the IHL's Rafales, and so the new Remparts were forced to look elsewhere and settled on PEPS for two seasons, from 1997-99, after which the junior team managed to secure a lease in the larger building. PEPS is today home to the Université Laval Rouge et Or varsity teams. The arena itself is unique in that it features two ice pads side-by-side, but the two can actually combine into one ice pad that can be used for long-track speed skating. I was not able to get into the seating bowl when I visited due to the arena being used for a Rouge et Or game, but Gary Parsons did; I thank him for the inside picture.
Colisée de Trois-Rivières
Former Home of the Trois-Rivières Ducs, Draveurs
The Colisée de Trois-Rivières is a streamlined, Art Deco arena located on the grounds of Trois-Rivières's fairgrounds. It's built next to the city's ballpark, and the road out front of the rink doubles as part of the track for the "Grand-Prix de Trois-Rivières", which I can only assume is some sort of motor race. The rink itself is white with red trim and has a small amount of parking right in front. Once inside, the small main lobby features stairs that lead up into the heart of the rink. Apart from the roof support columns in the seats, the place feels newer than it is; all the seats are new plastic and the maintenance has obviously been there throughout the arena's history. The arena also has an innovation I haven't seen anywhere else - the top concourse is separated from the standing room by an elevation change, so the SRO patrons don't interfere with traffic around the top of the building. The Colisée was used by the Q from 1969 to 1992, when the Draveurs moved to Sherbrooke. They are today the Lewiston Maineiacs. The rink today is home to the UQTR Patriotes varsity teams and the LNAH's Trois-Rivières Caron et Guay, yet many people in the three rivers region still pine for the days when the local junior boys beat up on nearby Shawinigan.
Former Home of the Verdun Maple Leafs 1969-72; Verdun Eperviers 1977-80; Verdun Juniors 1982-84; Verdun Junior Canadiens, 1984-89; and Verdun College Francais, 1991-94
The old Verdun Auditorium is a legend in Quebec, having witnessed political rallies, wrestling, circuses, and anything else you'd care to name. Traditionally it has been known as Montreal's "second" arena; i.e. the one you played when you couldn't sell out the Forum. I have not been myself, so I can't say what it's like there. These pictures are courtesy Alex Read, whom I thank.
This is a list of all the other former QMJHL arenas that I am aware of. While I have virtually no hope of visiting them all at present, I am posting this list because it is not otherwise available on the internet, and also because it reminds me how depressingly far away I am from ever completing a QMJHL Arena & Travel Guide. (Bear in mind that I still haven't been to 13 of the current 18 buildings either.)
This list may contain omissions or mistakes, please email me if you have any corrections. Also, if you have any photos of arenas on this list, please send them to .
Plattsburgh Pioneers 1984-85 (half)
Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena (first five games)
Crete Memorial Civic Center (final games)
The Pioneers were supposed to play at the Civic Center but renovations were not complete in 1984 so they played their first five games at the Plattsburgh State Field House (Stafford Arena). They moved into the Civic Center after renovations finished, but folded shortly afterwards.
Granby Bisons 1981-95
Granby Prédateurs 1995-97
Arena Léonard Grondin
Laval Saints 1969-70
Laval National 1971-79
Laval Voisins 1979-85
Laval Titan 1985-98
Colisée de Laval
Longueuil Chevaliers 1982-87
Longueuil College Francais 1988-91
Colisée Jean Béliveau
Rosemont National 1969-71
Montreal Juniors 1979-82
Arena Paul Sauvé
Built 1960, Demolished 1992*
St-Jean Castors 1982-89
St-Jean Lynx 1989-95
St-Jérôme Alouettes 1969-72
St-Hyacinthe Laser 1989-96
Stade L.P. Gaucher
Sherbrooke Castors 1969-82
Sherbrooke Faucons 1992-98
Sherbrooke Castors 1998-2003
Palais des Sports
Sorel Éperviers 1969-77
Sorel Éperviers 1980-81
* There are a couple of websites on the internet, including the "authoritative" source of Wikipedia, that give the date of demolition for the Paul Sauvé Arena as 1996. This is incorrect - the building was demolished over the summer of 1992 after being bought by a developer who built condos on the site, a fact noted in the May 14/92 issue of the Montreal Gazette.