Ted Reeve Hockey Association’s 65th anniversary celebration included team photo trip down memory lane

Stephen King, president of Ted Reeve Hockey Association, drops the puck at a ceremonial face-off in advance of a game featuring players of different ages on Saturday, Oct. 5. Inset photos show some of the hundreds of team photos that were on display at Ted Reeve Arena on Saturday as part of the association's 65th anniversary celebrations. Photos by Alan Shackleton.

The Ted Reeve Hockey Association celebrated its 65th anniversary in style last weekend.

The club hosted a variety of events throughout the day at Ted Reeve Arena, including an official ceremony to mark the milestone in the afternoon.

Stephen King, president of the association, dropped the puck at a ceremonial face-off in advance of a special game which saw players of different age groups take part.

The game was part of the opening ceremonies which also featured speeches by local politicians, and a parade through the rink led by a bagpiper.

King has been with Ted Reeve hockey for 45 years and spoke of the importance of the association to the East Toronto community, and how important the support of volunteers is, in advance of the puck drop.

A special feature at Saturday’s celebration was the display of more than 300 team photos spanning the seven decades that the Ted Reeve Hockey Association has been existence.

The photos were taped to the walls of the arena, and many people took a trip down memory lane as they walked around the rink looking at the pictures to see if they could spot themselves, family members or friends.

The club is continuing to gather team photos for further displays, and anyone who has a team pic from Ted Reeve hockey is asked to email it to tedreevehockey@gmail.com

Community support has always been at the core of Ted Reeve hockey, and that goes right back to the campaign to get the rink built which began in the early 1950s.

Ted Reeve Arena officially opened on Oct. 13, 1954 at a special ceremony that saw more than 3,000 people pack into the rink which had a capacity at the time of about 1,800.

Getting the arena built was a massive community undertaking which featured numerous local fundraising events.

The idea for building an indoor rink for the east end of Toronto surfaced shortly after the end of the Second World War, but really got rolling in May of 1950 when the official fundraising drive for the Toronto East Arena Gardens began with a parade along Queen Street East.

The cost of the rink, of which the City of Toronto would pay half was $250,000. The other half, $125,000, had to come from the community.

“It seemed like everyone was involved,” Jack Blakeley, a young hockey player back in the 1950s, said of the fundraising drive in a story in the Beach Metro News about the association’s 60th anniversary.

It helped that local legend Ted Reeve was a supporter of the need for the arena. He used his connections and sports column in the Toronto Telegram newspaper to help lead the fundraising efforts.

Reeve was born in the Beach and spent most his life there. He was a star lacrosse and football player, winning the Grey Cup with the Balmy Beach team in both 1927 and 1930.

For more information on the Ted Reeve Hockey Association, please visit www.tedreevehockey.com

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