Department of Canadian Heritage

Department of Canadian Heritage

March 03, 2015 12:07 ET

Statement by Minister of State Gosal on the 140th Anniversary of the First Indoor Hockey Game in Canada

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - March 3, 2015) - On March 3, 1875, James Creighton, a figure skating judge originally from Halifax, organized the first indoor hockey game at the Victoria Skating Rink in Montréal. Today we mark the 140th anniversary of that inaugural organized match and celebrate the game that has contributed in such a significant way to defining the Canadian story and our national identity.

The match that night in Montréal formalized the game by bringing it indoors and establishing fixed teams. It also helped create the first written code, in which today's rulebook has its roots. From these modest beginnings, Canada's game has flourished-from the local rinks that define the landscape in so many communities across our country to the top of the Olympic and Paralympic podiums.

As another milestone during this Year of Sport in Canada, this anniversary-along with the 100th anniversary of Hockey Canada-underscores the importance to our country not only of hockey, but also of sport in general. Today, we celebrate and honour our inspiring athletes and the community volunteers who donate countless hours to fostering a love of sport in our young people. We know when we embrace the power of sport and lead more active lifestyles, we not only benefit individually, but we also build healthier, stronger communities.

Our Government is committed to helping Canadians-and especially our children-become and stay more active. That is why we have doubled the Children's Fitness Tax Credit to $1,000. This change, which has already taken effect, will help parents offset the costs of enrolling their children in organized sports.

We are a leading sport nation and we want to keep it that way. Thanks to James Creighton, the founding father of organized hockey, that first game in Montréal so many years ago helped define one important element of our country's sporting identity.

Related Links

- Prime Minister Harper Pays Tribute to the "Father" of Organized Hockey (May 22, 2008)

- PM unveils monument for "father" of organized hockey (October 24, 2009)

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Contact Information

  • Robert Lynch
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Honourable Bal Gosal, P.C., M.P.
    Minister of State (Sport)
    819-934-1122
    robert.lynch@sports.gc.ca