Canad Inns Stadium

Last updated
Canad Inns Stadium
Bomber Stadium.JPG
Canad Inns Stadium
Former namesWinnipeg Stadium (1953–2000)
Location1465 Maroons Road
Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3G 0L6
Coordinates 49°53′22″N97°11′54″W / 49.889570°N 97.198320°W / 49.889570; -97.198320 Coordinates: 49°53′22″N97°11′54″W / 49.889570°N 97.198320°W / 49.889570; -97.198320
Owner City of Winnipeg
Operator Winnipeg Enterprises Corporation
Winnipeg Football Club
Capacity Canadian football:
15,700 (1953)
17,995 (1954)
32,946 (1978)
33,675 (1987)
29,533 (1999)
Record attendance51,985 (1991 Grey Cup)
SurfaceGrass (1953–1987)
AstroTurf (1988–2002)
AstroPlay (2003–2012)
Broke groundNovember 1952
OpenedAugust 14, 1953 (1953-08-14)
ClosedJanuary 3, 2013 (2013-01-03)
DemolishedApril–August 2013
Construction cost$483,000 CAD
($4.73 million in 2020 dollars [1] )
ArchitectMoody and Moore
Winnipeg Blue Bombers (CFL) (1953–2012)
Winnipeg Goldeyes (NL) (1953–1964, 1969)
Winnipeg Whips (IL) (1970–1971)
Winnipeg Fury (CSL) (1987–1992)
Winnipeg Goldeyes (NL) (1994–1998)
Winnipeg Rifles (CJFL) (2002–2012)

Canad Inns Stadium (also known as Winnipeg Stadium) was a multipurpose stadium in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The stadium was located at the corner of St. James Street and Maroons Road, immediately north of the Polo Park Shopping Centre and the now-defunct Winnipeg Arena. Although built for the Canadian Football League's Winnipeg Blue Bombers, the stadium also accommodated baseball and soccer, and was used by various iterations of the Winnipeg Goldeyes and Winnipeg Whips. The stadium was demolished after the Blue Bombers moved to Investors Group Field, now known as IG Field, in 2013.[ citation needed ]



During the Blue Bombers' early years, the team played at Osborne Stadium, a much smaller venue located near the Manitoba Legislative Buildings. The fast passing-dominated play of Bombers quarterback Jack Jacobs dramatically increased attendance at Blue Bombers games and precipitated the need for a new, larger stadium.

In the wake of several unsuccessful proposals for a new stadium, Winnipeg Enterprises Corporation, a newly created non-profit organization led by Winnipeg Football Club president Culver Riley, presented a plan for the construction of a new 15,700 seat stadium in the Polo Park district. The plan was approved by the City of Winnipeg in August 1952. [2] Winnipeg Stadium was officially opened on August 14, 1953, with a fundraising gala to benefit the Winnipeg Unit of the Shriners Hospitals for Children. Foster Hewitt served as the master of ceremonies as 12,000 spectators watched an array of Shriners, athletes, politicians, and Hollywood actress Corinne Calvet inaugurate the stadium. The following night, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers played the first football game at the new facility against the Ottawa Rough Riders. The stadium became known as "the house that Jack built" in recognition of the contributions of Jack Jacobs.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers game at Canad Inns Stadium, August 2010 Winnipeg Blue Bombers game.jpg
Winnipeg Blue Bombers game at Canad Inns Stadium, August 2010

The on-field success of the Blue Bombers and their growing fan base led to numerous expansions of the facility beginning in 1954, when capacity was raised to 17,995. Of those seats, only 10,166 were on permanent concrete grandstands, with the remainder being temporary seating in the stadium corners. Further additions included the construction of new north end-zone seating in 1966 and expansion of the west side grandstands, including a new upper deck, in 1972. In 1978, the east side grandstands were expanded, with a new upper deck, raising capacity to 32,946. Seats were also added in 1987 when the stadium was configured to accommodate baseball, at which point its capacity peaked at 33,675.

AstroTurf was installed in time for the 1988 season (when it was installed, the Edmonton Eskimos became the last CFL team to have a natural grass surface, but it would switch to a next-generation artificial surface in 2010), which the team welcomed with a Grey Cup victory that year at Lansdowne Park in Ottawa. In 1999, the lower deck benches were replaced by theatre-style seats, the press boxes were enlarged, and a club lounge was added. As a result, seating capacity was reduced to 29,533 and remained that way until the stadium's closure. The artificial turf was replaced by a next-generation AstroPlay surface in 2003.

Winnipeg-based hotel chain Canad Inns acquired the naming rights to Winnipeg Stadium in 2001, after which the facility became known as Canad Inns Stadium. In 2004, Winnipeg Enterprises Corporation was dissolved and operation of the facility was turned over to the Winnipeg Football Club. [3]


The original baseball grandstands were built in 1954, at a cost of $184,000, and located in the southwest corner of the complex. The grandstands housed the original incarnation of the Winnipeg Goldeyes and the Winnipeg Whips, the Class AAA affiliate of the Montreal Expos. The grandstands were demolished in the early 1980s to make way for the Blue and Gold Room and, for nearly a decade, baseball could not be accommodated at the stadium.

The stadium once again became a multi-sport venue in the late 1980s. Artificial turf, retractable seats on the east side stands, and new seating behind the home plate area (the northwest corner of the football field) were installed in an effort to attract another professional baseball team to Winnipeg. Although official minor league baseball never returned to the city, the new Winnipeg Goldeyes, an independent team, began play at the stadium in 1994. The Goldeyes played five seasons at the stadium, which included a Northern League championship in 1994 and an independent baseball single-game attendance record of 22,081 set in 1997. The Goldeyes moved into their own ballpark in 1999, which marked the end of baseball at Winnipeg Stadium. [4]

Major events

The stadium hosted the opening ceremonies of both the 1967 and 1999 Pan-American Games. The 1967 Games saw the construction of new north end zone seating. The 1999 Games saw several improvements in preparation for the event, including new seats to replace old benches, additional media and club seating facilities, improved lighting and sound, and a new Sony JumboTron scoreboard.[ citation needed ]

The CFL's championship game, the Grey Cup, was held at the stadium in 1991, 1998, and 2006. In each instance, temporary seating was installed to increase the stadium's capacity. The stadium's attendance record for football was set at the 1991 game, when 51,985 fans watched the Toronto Argonauts defeat the Calgary Stampeders. For the 2006 game, temporary seats were erected at the south end of the football field, raising the Stadium's capacity to 44,784. [5]

The stadium also hosted numerous outdoor concerts, including big-name acts such as The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Paul McCartney, AC/DC, Bon Jovi, the Eagles and U2. Many outdoor music festivals, such as Festival Express and Rock on the Range, were also held at the stadium.


Increasing maintenance costs and the accidental death of a fan during a football game in 2006 intensified discussions on the future of Canad Inns Stadium. By 2009, it was estimated that the aging stadium would require over $52 million in upgrades as early as 2012 in order to make it safe and viable for another decade. [6] Faced with the decision on whether to refurbish the old stadium or replace it, the Manitoba government fast-tracked financing for a new stadium. In 2010, Premier Greg Selinger, together with the Winnipeg Football Club and the University of Manitoba, unveiled plans to build $190 million Investors Group Field on the university campus in south Winnipeg. The stadium was slated to be completed in time for the 2012 CFL season, after which Canad Inns Stadium would be demolished. [7]

West side stands of Canad Inns Stadium CanadaInnsStadium.jpg
West side stands of Canad Inns Stadium

In anticipation of the scheduled move to Investors Group Field, the Blue Bombers held a special ceremony to close out Canad Inns Stadium prior to their last regular season game of 2011. However, as construction delays at the new stadium pushed back its opening date by several months, the team was forced to return to Canad Inns Stadium for the 2012 season. [8] [9] The Blue Bombers played their final game at the stadium on November 3, 2012, defeating the Montreal Alouettes 19–11. [10] The football club officially closed its offices at Canad Inns Stadium on January 3, 2013. [11]


In June 2012, the city announced the proposed sale of the stadium to Polo Park Holdings Inc, owner of the nearby Polo Park shopping centre, for $30.25 million. The sale was finalized in April 2013 and demolition began soon after. The stadium was dismantled piece-by-piece over a period of four months, beginning with the north end zone and west side grandstands. [12] [13]

Fans had the opportunity to purchase memorabilia from the old stadium prior to its demolition, including seats, pieces of turf, and other equipment not moved to Investors Group Field. Other fixtures, such as stadium benches, were donated to local community clubs and sports teams. [14]

The site is currently being developed into a retail and commercial park known as The Plaza at Polo Park. Demolition of the stadium has also permitted the city to connect two segments of Milt Stegall Drive (formerly Arena Road) which were separated by the stadium. [12] [13] [15]

See also

Related Research Articles

Winnipeg Blue Bombers Canadian professional football team

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers are a professional Canadian football team based in Winnipeg, Manitoba and the current Grey Cup champions. The Blue Bombers compete in the Canadian Football League (CFL) as a member club of the league's West division. They play their home games at IG Field after many years of playing at the since-demolished Canad Inns Stadium.

Taylor Field (Regina, Saskatchewan)

Taylor Field, known in its latter years as Mosaic Stadium at Taylor Field for sponsorship reasons, was an open-air stadium located in Regina, Saskatchewan. It was the home field of the Canadian Football League's Saskatchewan Roughriders from 1936 until 2016, although a playing field existed at the site as early as 1910 and the team began playing there as early as 1921. Originally designed to house baseball as well as football, the stadium was converted to a football-only facility in 1966.

Exhibition Stadium Former multi-purpose stadium in Toronto

Canadian National Exhibition Stadium was a multi-purpose stadium that formerly stood on the Exhibition Place grounds, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Originally built for Canadian National Exhibition events, the stadium served as the home of the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League, from 1959–1988, the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball from 1977–1989, and the Toronto Blizzard of the North American Soccer League from 1979–1983. The stadium hosted the Grey Cup game 12 times over a 24-year period.

Winnipeg Arena was an indoor arena located in the Polo Park district of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The arena was the city's premier ice hockey venue from 1955 to 2004 and is best remembered as the home of the first Winnipeg Jets franchise, which played in the World Hockey Association (WHA) from 1972 to 1979 and the National Hockey League (NHL) from 1979 to 1996. It was also home to junior and minor league teams such as the Manitoba Moose (1996–2004) and Winnipeg Warriors (1955–1961). The arena closed after the completion of the MTS Centre in November 2004 and was later demolished. A retail and commercial complex occupies the site today.


The Autostade was a Canadian football stadium in the Victoriatown neighbourhood of Montreal, Quebec that stood at the north-west corner of the Cité du Havre sector of the Expo 67 site. It was the home of the Montreal Alouettes from 1968–1976, except for a brief period in 1972 when the team returned to its previous home, Molson Stadium.

TD Place Stadium

TD Place Stadium is an outdoor stadium in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. It is located at Lansdowne Park, on the southern edge of The Glebe neighbourhood, where Bank Street crosses the Rideau Canal. It is the home of the Ottawa Redblacks of the Canadian Football League (CFL), Atlético Ottawa of the Canadian Premier League (CPL), and the Ottawa Aces in League 1 of the Rugby Football League (RFL).

McMahon Stadium

McMahon Stadium is a Canadian football stadium in Calgary, Alberta. The stadium is owned by the University of Calgary and operated by the McMahon Stadium Society.

Winnipeg Goldeyes Canadian baseball team

The Winnipeg Goldeyes are a professional baseball team based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The Goldeyes play in the American Association of Professional Baseball, which they joined in 2011. Previously, the Goldeyes were members of the Northern League from 1994 until 2010. The Goldeyes were champions of the Northern League in 1994. They are also three-time champions of the American Association; having won in 2012, and back-to-back in 2016 and 2017.

Shaw Park Baseball stadium in Winnipeg, Canada

Shaw Park is a baseball stadium in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It is located adjacent to The Forks National Historic Site, near the city's downtown, and is home to the Winnipeg Goldeyes of the American Association.

Milton Eugene Stegall is a former professional gridiron football player who played 17 years of professional football, three years in the National Football League with the Cincinnati Bengals and 14 years in the Canadian Football League with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. He is currently an analyst on the CFL on TSN studio panel.

Osborne Stadium opened on May 19, 1932 featuring seating for 4,000 spectators. It was best known as the home of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers from 1935 until 1952. The stadium was modified to accommodate baseball in 1935, and became home to teams in various other local and regional baseball circuits.

Banjo Bowl Annual Canadian football rematch game

The Banjo Bowl is the annual rematch game between the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League (CFL) after the Labour Day Classic. While the traditional Labour Day Classic game is always played on the Sunday before Labour Day at Mosaic Stadium in Regina, Saskatchewan, there is usually a rematch on the following weekend between these two rival prairie teams at IG Field in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Multi-purpose stadium

A multi-purpose stadium is a type of stadium designed to be easily used by multiple types of events. While any stadium could potentially host more than one type of sport or event, this concept usually refers to a specific design philosophy that stresses multifunctionality over specificity. It is used most commonly in Canada and the United States, where the two most popular outdoor team sports – American football and baseball – require radically different facilities. Football uses a rectangular field, while baseball is played on a diamond and large outfield. This requires a particular design to accommodate both, usually an oval, while some later designs used an octorad. While building stadiums in this way means that sports teams and governments can share costs, it also imposes some challenges.

IG Field

IG Field is a football stadium in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The stadium, which opened in 2013, is located on the University of Manitoba campus next to University Stadium. Owned by Triple B Stadium Inc., a consortium of the City of Winnipeg, the Province of Manitoba, the Winnipeg Football Club and the University of Manitoba, the stadium is home to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League (CFL), Valour FC of the Canadian Premier League (CPL), the University of Manitoba Bisons football team, and the Winnipeg Rifles (CJFL).

Canad Inns is a chain of hotels headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Winnipeg Rifles

The Winnipeg Rifles are a Canadian football team based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The Rifles are members of the Canadian Junior Football League and play their home games at IG Field, home of the CFL's Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

99th Grey Cup

The 99th Grey Cup was a Canadian football game between the East Division champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the West Division champion BC Lions to decide the champion of the Canadian Football League in the 2011 season. The Lions defeated the Blue Bombers 34–23 and became the first team in CFL history to win the Grey Cup after starting the season with five straight losses. They also became the first team to win the championship game at home since the 1994 Lions did it in the 82nd Grey Cup, and were only the fourth team in the modern era to do so. This, a rematch of the 76th Grey Cup, was the second time that these two teams met for the championship.

2012 Winnipeg Blue Bombers season

The 2012 Winnipeg Blue Bombers season was the 55th season for the team in the Canadian Football League and their 80th overall. The Blue Bombers looked to continue on the success of the 2011 season, in which they made it all the way to the Grey Cup game. However, the team slipped to 3rd place in the East Division and missed the playoffs, finishing with a 6–12 record. The team was supposed to play their first season in their new stadium, Investors Group Field, but ongoing construction delays have moved its opening to the beginning of the 2013 season. The Blue Bombers started the season with four straight road games, which was due to speculation that the stadium would be opened in time for a home opener in week 5 at the earliest. The Blue Bombers started the season 0–4 for the first time since 2008, which was also, coincidentally, a year after they had an appearance in the Grey Cup game.

Albertsons Stadium American football stadium at Boise State University

Albertsons Stadium is an outdoor athletic stadium in the western United States, located on the campus of Boise State University in Boise, Idaho. It is the home field of the Boise State Broncos of the Mountain West Conference. Known as Bronco Stadium for its first 44 seasons, it was renamed in May 2014 when Albertsons, a chain of grocery stores founded by Boise area resident Joe Albertson, purchased the naming rights.


  1. 1688 to 1923: Geloso, Vincent, A Price Index for Canada, 1688 to 1850 (December 6, 2016). Afterwards, Canadian inflation numbers based on Statistics Canada tables 18-10-0005-01 (formerly CANSIM 326-0021) "Consumer Price Index, annual average, not seasonally adjusted". Statistics Canada. Retrieved April 17, 2021. and table 18-10-0004-13 "Consumer Price Index by product group, monthly, percentage change, not seasonally adjusted, Canada, provinces, Whitehorse, Yellowknife and Iqaluit". Statistics Canada. Retrieved April 17, 2021.
  2. Lett, Dan (May 21, 2010). "Not much has changed since last stadium was built". Winnipeg Free Press.
  3. Winnipeg, City of. "News : 2004 News Releases - City of Winnipeg". Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  4. " Goldeyes Goldeyes "Deformity Field" Remembered". Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  5. | Grey Cup organizers still hoping for a sellout Archived November 16, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  6. "Stadium money pit deepens?". Winnipeg Free Press. October 9, 2009.
  7. "Sod turned for new Bomber stadium". CBC. May 20, 2010.
  8. "Blue Bombers prepare for final regular season game at Canad Inns Stadium". 24 October 2011. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  9. "404". TSN. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  10. Bombers set to move into new stadium, Slam! Sports, 3 November 2012
  11. Bombers set to move into new stadium, Winnipeg Free Press, 17 December 2012
  12. 1 2 "Stadium demolition to get started soon". Winnipeg Free Press. April 18, 2013.
  13. 1 2 "Canad Inns Stadium being torn down". Winnipeg Sun. April 23, 2013.
  14. "Winnipeg Blue Bombers stadium sale includes urinal trough". October 30, 2012.
  15. "Polo Park Target now open". Winnipeg Free Press. October 17, 2014.
Events and tenants
Preceded by
Osborne Stadium
Home of the
Winnipeg Blue Bombers

Succeeded by
IG Field
Preceded by
First stadium
Home of the
Winnipeg Goldeyes

Succeeded by
CanWest Global Park
Preceded by
Estadio José María Minella
Mar del Plata
Pan American Games
Opening and Closing Ceremonies

Succeeded by
Estadio Olímpico Juan Pablo Duarte
Santo Domingo