Every time the guide is updated, details will appear on this page.
July 26, 2009: The French version of the Drakkar page is online.
June 28, 2009: Français! La plus excellent Mathieu Simard traduit la page d'Océanic pour moi, et il est ici. Over time Mathieu has volunteered to translate the rest of the site, and hopefully it will eventually become completely bilingual. I would be thrilled were it to become so.
June 22, 2009: New pictures from the 2009 Memorial Cup were sent to me by the excellent Mathieu Simard back in May. I've finally gotten around to posting them. The Colisée de Rimouski was extensively renovated for the event, and the new building looks terrific.
May 9, 2009: Bless the QMJHL for putting every game sheet from every game they ever played online. Curse them for having so many weird curiosities to discover that I have to go to. Guillaume Baron informs me that a 1992 municipal strike in Shawinigan brought the Aréna de Grand-Mère into service for five playoff games, and so one more rink has been added to the list. Fortunately, Andy Ritter has been to the old Grandmother Arena, and thus with pictures available, a page is now online. Thanks Andy, and everyone check out his arena website if you haven't already.
April 12, 2009: Sigh... another curiosity for me to visit. The Moncton Wildcats played games this playoff series at the J.-Louis Levesque Arena on the campus of the Université de Moncton, thanks to the World Curling Championships being pre-booked into the Moncton Coliseum. The arena holds 1,600 and was built in 1966.
March 29, 2009: After all that, the Maineiacs are staying put as well. So the end result of all of that commotion is... the status quo. But on a happier (and still Lewiston-related) note, I've added a page for the Cumberland County Civic Center, with pictures courtesy of Curtis Boyd.
March 12, 2009: Never mind.
It turns out that St. John's was never more than a bargaining chip for the devious Leo-Guy Morrissette, who used the city to extrac more concessions out of Bathurst. So the Titan aren't moving after all. As for Lewiston, no one still knows anything.
March 9, 2009: If anyone ever tells you that the QMJHL is screwed up... believe them. There's been a ton of news from the league this year, and for those of you who haven't been following, let me try to sum it up for you.
OK, so the Maineiacs announced they were moving to Boisbriand. But the Montreal Junior vetoed the move, based upon the exclusivity agreement that the league signed with them only last year. Apparently everyone in the league office had collective amnesia when they approved the move, but in the end, that was out. Meanwhile, the venerable Leo-Guy Morrissette, owner of the Acadie-Bathurst Titan, also announced he wanted to move. The deadline to submit move plans for 2009-10 came and went, and nothing out of the league office, except that both teams were granted extensions. "Sure", the Q said, "take all the time you want to decide."
So it would appear, at this point, to be mostly (but not completely) confirmed that the Titan will be moving to, of all places... St. John's. I'm absolutely thrilled that the Rock's getting a team back, and this time, it might actually work, with an owner in the Old Boys' Club and the full cooperation of the city this time around. It's a shame for the fans in Bathurst though, as I have terrific memories of my trip there a few years back. Meanwhile, the Maineiacs still haven't decided, but the latest rumour is that Fredericton could be the destination provided that they can work out an agreement with UNB to use the Aitken Centre.
The Q is messed up.
Februrary 1, 2009: Big news out of Lewiston, as it appears that the Maineiacs are to be no more. The team will be moving to the Montreal suburb of Boisbriand next year into a new arena, the Centre d'Excellence sur Glace. I regret that I never got to a game in Lewiston, but between Boisbriand and the new rink in Shawinigan it would appear that I have a new easy Quebec trip for next year.
January 18, 2009: Mike Barolet has sent in an interior photo of the new Shawinigan Amphitheatre.
January 4, 2009: I'm a week late on this thanks to the combination of the holidays and being sick for two weeks and counting, but the Shawinigan Cataractes opened their new arena on December 27. The old page has moved here. Also, fittingly, Jean Deschenes of Shawinigan is our first ever entrant to the Hall of Fame.
December 6, 2008: A new footnote arena is added to the list this weekend, as the Lewiston Maineiacs are playing two home games yesterday and today at the Cumberland County Civic Center in Portland, Maine. If anyone has pictures, please send them on.
December 3, 2008: A Google map of the QMJHL has been added to the main index page.
October 24, 2008: It's the last of the big trip updates today. We begin with two more former Q arenas - the one game Iberville Palladium and also the Colisée Cardin in Sorel. As former Q buildings go, I'm now down to five footnotes remaining unvisited - the two in Plattsburgh, the Stade de la Cité des Jeunes in far-away Rivière-du-Loup, the Pavillon de la Jeunesse (which I drove right by last year not realizing what it was), and the CEGEP de Valleyfield, which doesn't appear to actually exist. Research is ongoing, and I'll try to hit whatever it was next time I'm in Montreal.
At long last, I also am unveiling the full arena profile for the Arena Jacques-Plante, as well as a 12-picture photo gallery of the game. This doesn't conclude the updates, though, as I still have a backlog of pictures and information and will be making further tweaks to this and the OHL site over the next week.
October 22, 2008: Continuing with the daily updates, today I have the second of three current arena updates with the Robert Guertin Arena profile now uploaded. In addition, pages for former arenas in Granby and St-Jean-sur-Richelieu are now updated with new pictures and writeups. Stay tuned for more former arenas tomorrow, and the pièce de résistance on Friday with a new writeup and photo gallery from the magnificent Jacques Plante Arena in Shawinigan.
October 20, 2008: Well, I'm back from Quebec. It was a whirlwind trip of hockey games including seeing the Habs and Coyotes on Saturday night, and I ask you - how on earth am I supposed to keep hating the Habs when the fans are that amazing? If you haven't seen the Canadiens at home, go - I thought atmosphere like that didn't exist in the NHL anymore. At any rate, I've now visited pretty much every former Q arena in the Montreal area, and so this site is going to be overwhelmingly overhauled over the next week. Keep checking back throughout this week as I roll it all out. To start with today, I've posted the arena profile for the Verdun Auditorium, created a new arena page for Paul Sauvé Arena, and updated the Sherbrooke page with a writeup and new pictures. Still to come over the course of this week: profiles from Gatineau and Shawinigan, plus full former arena pages for Granby, St-Hyacinthe, Longueuil, Laval, St-Jérôme, Cornwall, the Bell Centre, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Iberville and Sorel-Tracy. I've got a lot to do this coming week, so keep checking back for more!
October 11, 2008: Housecleaning is done for the new season, with all ticket prices now being updated. I've been doing some behind-the-scenes prep work for my trip to Quebec next week, but it'll wait to be unveiled until then. In addition to going to three Q games in three days, we're also planning to get to every former Q rink across the whole Montreal region, so we should have no shortage of updates for a while afterwards, eh? Stay tuned.
September 9, 2008: I have discovered why the Voltigeurs played three games in Rivière-du-Loup in January of 1998 - the apocalyptic ice storm that knocked out power for weeks across huge swaths of the country. Rivière-du-Loup was apparently far enough away that the team could play their regularly-scheduled games during the storm cleanup. I've also discovered that they definitely did play at the Stade de la Cité des Jeunes, and that rink was built in 1962.
September 6, 2008: I would like to state for the record that I am dismayed that the UWO library system only has full copies of French-language Quebec newspapers up to 1987. I went to Weldon Library this morning to try to figure out why the three random single-game arenas from 1984, 1993 and 1998 were used in the way they were, and discovered only one answer: St-Jean played a game at the Iberville Palladium in 1984 due to a municipal strike. The other two reasons are still mysterious, but make no mistake - I will not rest until I find the answers. Also I plan to visit both in October - it's now official that I'll be going to Shawinigan, Montreal and Gatineau next month.
September 1, 2008: The 2008-09 QMJHL season kicks off officially in ten short days, and year two of this particular site kicks off right here and now. There are a few changes in store for both this website and for the league itself, so let's run through them in order. First of all, the big one - my beloved Fog Devils are no more. It was announced a long time ago, but it's still sad for me to realize that my long-held dream of going back to Newfoundland for a Memorial Cup isn't likely to happen. The Mile One Stadium page has been converted to a former arena page, and the Verdun Auditorium page has been converted to a current arena one.
There are a few other things to share. First of all, the Lewiston MAINEiacs have announced that they'll be playing a few regular-season games this season at the Cumberland County Civic Center in Portland, home to the AHL's Pirates. As such, it'll be added to the list when the time comes. Second, the Q has completed their admirable project of putting every gamesheet from the league's history online and I have learned two things. The Tim Horton's 4-Ice Centre is listed nowhere as a former Q arena for regular season games, and since my information was only based upon hearing it from someone, I have concluded that in lieu of further evidence, it probably wasn't ever used. So the page is gone. Also, back in mid-January of the 1997-98 season, the Drummondville Voltigeurs apparently played three home games at the "Arena de Rivière-du-Loup" in Rivière-du-Loup. Research indicates that this mystery arena was probably the 1,500-seat Stade de la Cité des Jeunes, which is still standing but has been largely replaced by the new Centre Premier-Tech. I have no information as to why Drummondville played three home games there, but the arena has been dutifully added to the former rink list. If anyone has pictures or information, please let me know.
Thus do we officially kick off the 2008-09 season. My planned trip in October to Montreal, Shawinigan and Gatineau is still only a possibility due to finances and the (thus far) impossibility of finding someone willing to join me for a weekend of so much driving and hockey. I hope it happens, but it's still up in the air at this point. Enjoy the season, folks, and keep those submissions coming.