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World’s oldest arena lives in Cambridge, turning 100 on Thursday

The Galt Arena Gardens turned 100 on Thursday and the City of Cambridge has a host of celebrations planned to honour the old barn it says has been the heart of the community.

“This is more than an anniversary for one of Cambridge’s beloved historic landmarks. It’s celebrating 100 years of memories in a place that has brought our community together, a place that everyone has a story or two about,” Mayor Kathryn McGarry stated.

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“Many remember growing up in this building, whether it was learning to skate, watching a hockey game or winning a gold medal. This is a piece of our city’s history that we can all be proud of.”

The arena, which is the oldest continually operating arena in the world, opened with a game between the Terriers and the Preston Intermediate club.

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Over the years, a host of future hockey and figure skating stars graced its tiny ice surface, including Gordie Howe, Terry Sawchuk, Bobby Hull, Toller Cranston and Ron Shaver.

It has also been home to the annual ice skating races, which continue to measure the fastest kids in town, as well as religious gatherings, industrial shows and the circus.

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Cambridge says it will offer 100 activities throughout the year in an attempt to honour the arena, although some options will have to wait until COVID-19 public health guidelines allow.

Currently, the online activities include a milestone timeline and a Hall of Fame display.

In addition, there will be opportunities for residents to visit and share their memories as well as purchase some memorabilia.

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