‘Old Barn’ Going Out with a Shazam
Stanstead College’s current arena wasn’t really ‘old’ until the promise of the Pat Burns Arena loomed on the horizon. After all, we were using it to host visiting teams and tournaments this past winter. Despite the new arena not being completed, it has already relegated its’ predecessor, the ‘Old Barn’, to the status of dinosaur.
Our new arena is so anticipated that we may be overlooking something important. How many irreplaceable memories lay within the walls of the current arena? How many hours of practice, how much sweat, memories of joy, anticipation, and disappointment have occurred, for so many generations of people, in this one place we will now abandon? And how will anyone whose great moments lay within truly feel when it closes its’ doors forever on April 9th, 2011?
The old arena is not going out with a whimper. And why should she? How many parents tell their children about the games that took place in that arena, about awesome goals in final minutes of important games? This place is valuable for more than its walls and ice. The celebration planned for her closing is going to be worthy of her historical value to Stanstead and the generations of people who shared great moments there.
On Friday, April 8th at 7:30 PM the arena will host Shazamfest’s ‘Cabin Fever’, an evening of Rock and Roll and wrestling. The evening’s entertainment includes five wrestling matches and the Shazam World Champion Title courtesy of the Eastern Townships Wrestling Association. Also performing are the burlesque performers Rockalilly & Capital Tease. ‘Bloodshot Bill’ is a one-man rockabilly band who will perform with gusto as the audience joins him to twist and shake on the dance floor.
Tickets for the show are $20 in advance or $25 at the door. If you’re inter- ested in purchasing tickets you may contact Hélène Hamel at (819) 876-7891, ext. 227, or buy them at the arena. There will be a cash bar offered. All proceeds of this exciting evening are to support the Pat Burns Arena fund. The minimum age requirement for the event is 16 years. For more information on the evening’s events visit www.shazamfest.com.
On Saturday, April 9th, the arena will host a Family Day. The events have been organized in collaboration with Stanstead’s Recreation and Cultural Centre, and will include a full day of family-oriented activities guaranteed to entertain every age group. Some of the scheduled events are free skating, an old-timers game, and a hockey skills competition. There will also be balloons, crafts, and a lunch for $2. To help raise money for the Stanstead Recreation and Cultural Centre, some activities charge a fee, such as raffles and a chuck-apuck contest, but the general admission for the day is free for everyone.
On Saturday doors will open at 11:00 AM and the fun will run into the evening, with the final closure of the Arena being 7:00 PM, April 9th. A detailed listing of the day’s itinerary will be published on Wednesday, April 6th in the Stanstead Journal, and will also be posted on site. All visitors are encouraged to bring photos to post on the arena’s Closing Day Memory Wall, where everyone is welcome to post photos of their Arena memories on poster boards that will be set up on site courtesy of Stanstead College.
The old Stanstead Arena, built in 1954 on land donated to the community by William Henry Holmes, will be closing its door for good on April 9th.