Stratford Kroehlers

Arena Name: Stratford Arena
(today William Allman Memorial Arena)
Capacity: 2,800
Built: 1924
Last OHA Game: 1951
Address: 15 Morenz Dr., Stratford, ON, N5A 6W3
Ice Surface Size: 190' X 85'


 Stratford Arena

Stratford Arena

 What Was the Arena Like?

When I first visited William Allman Memorial Arena in early 2004, I fell in love with the building, and it remains to this day my favourite hockey arena in Ontario. It is a perfectly-preserved relic of a bygone age, with steep seating, a high roof, and immaculate maintenance that keeps it feeling young. What was once known as Stratford Arena sits on a tiny plot of land in the heart of downtown Stratford, a stone's throw away from the Avon River. It is constructed of brown brick and has a new front facade that belies the building's advanced age. The new facade also includes a new ticket office, and once you enter through the heavy main doors you find yourself in a large lobby filled to capacity with photographs, trophies, and other hockey flotsam and jetsam collected over the years. The lobby has its own set of heavy doors that lead into a narrow corridor underneath the seating area that is so small that an adult has to duck in order not to bump his head on the support columns. Fortunately, fans are not subjected to this treatment on game-day, as there are also a pair of staircases that lead up into a top concourse.

The first view of the ice in Stratford is breathtaking. The arena glows brightly with colours. Bright red and blue wooden seats surround the ice surface, polished dark hardwood floors ring the seating area, and most of the bricks and steel are painted in a whitewash. Signage is painted in bright yellow and black directly onto the brick outer walls. Banners and signs hang from the ceiling. The scoreclock is relatively new and functional. The roof sits high above in an arch. The place is somewhat reminiscent of Windsor Arena, which was built in the same year, except that Allman has been properly taken care of over the years while Windsor has been allowed to rot.

While the OHA has not called Stratford home for more than half a century, the old arena still stands proudly. I believe it is Ontario's finest old arena, and attending a junior B game in Stratford allows any fan to steep in the tradition of the formative days of junior hockey in Ontario.

 Inside Stratford Arena

William Allman Memorial Arena

 What's the Arena Used for Today?
Stratford Arena was renamed in 1996 to William Allman Memorial Arena, in honour of the long-time building manager. The arena was used for OHA hockey way back in the formative days of the league, but there has not been major junior team located in the Festival City for over fifty years now. The arena is still in great shape, considering its age, and is used by one of the most successful junior B franchises in Canada, the Stratford Warriors. The arena has also been used by many film and television crews as a stand-in for an old-time hockey rink, most notably in Bauer's "Leave an Impression" series of ads.

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

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Last Revised: December 7, 2019