Arena Name: Kamloops Memorial Arena Capacity: 2500 Built: 1948 Address: 740 Victoria St, Kamloops, BC V2C 2B6 Ice Surface Size: 190' X 80' Last Game: 1992
Kamloops Memorial Arena
What's the Arena Like?
Kamloops Memorial Arena is one of Canada's legion of postwar arena projects, opening in 1948 to serve the needs of the baby boom. It still stands in downtown Kamloops, painted brick and a barrel roof worthy of a late 1940's arena. When I visited on a beautiful late fall day in 2021, the arena was locked tight - I checked every door - and a friendly homeless person sitting on a bench out front informed me that the city had been using it as an emergency shelter during the COVID pandemic, with the arena floor having enough space to maintain social distancing. It was disappointing not to see inside, but with Kamloops being on the way to pretty much everywhere else in the BC interior, I'm sure I'll be back someday. The city of Kamloops has no plans to shutter the building any time soon, and with ice at a premium in Canada's Tournament Capital, the old Memorial Arena should remain standing for long into the future.
What's the Arena Used for Today?
After the Blazers left in 1992, Memorial Arena remained open and hosting minor hockey tournaments and the like. The building was still in reasonable shape, it was just too small for the WHL of the 1990's. As mentioned, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the Memorial Arena was turned into an emergency homeless shelter, but local hockey and skating groups are lobbying the city to turn it back into an arena.
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