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On behalf of my colleagues on City Council and all City of Belleville staff, it is my pleasure to present our 2017 Fall ‘Roots of Belleville Hockey’ edition of the BELLEVILLE magazine. In honour of the Belleville Senators inaugural home opener that took place November 1st, 2017 at the newly renovated Yardman Arena, this special edition takes us back through the rich history of hockey in the Quinte region and how the game has shaped our great City. Hockey has been an integral part of the Quinte region since inception and as such we are thrilled to showcase various stories and photographs of local hockey legends past, present and future. From forefathers such as Dennis and Bobby Hull, to the outstanding achievements of the Belleville Bulls, to the exciting launch of Belleville’s first American Hockey League team; hockey and Belleville have always gone hand in hand. The cooler months also signify a special time for families and visitors to gather, express thanks for our blessings and enjoy the many seasonal cultural and recreational activities that we offer. As the closing of the Belleville 200 celebrations draw near, I look forward to another successful year ahead and invite you all to join me on January 1st at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre for the annual New Year’s Day Levee as we ring in 2018. Best Wishes & Happy Holidays,

GENERAL MANAGER, ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES Perry Decola BELLEVILLE Magazine is published quarterly by the City of Belleville.

Taso A. Christopher Mayor

Contributors this edition: Aaron Bell, Belleville Senators, Chris Rutledge, Dave Mills, James Hurst and Richard Hughes. Editor - Marilyn Warren BELLEVILLE Magazine is available online and in an accessible text-only format at Printed in Canada All information ©2017, City of Belleville. No use is permitted without written consent.

Family Day February 2017 Air Canada Centre in Toronto Belleville Senators play Toronto Marlies


contents 2 - 3








a part of our hockey history


showcased in new location

their legacy continues MARC CRAWFORD

a tale of two cities






world champions

how it came to be


love their hockey



by our Belleville Bulls DR. ROBERT L. VAUGHAN

25 year hockey adventure



grit and glory


welcomes Senators’ call here in our City


exciting transformation



impact on and off the ice



28 JEAN-BAPTISTE the Flying Frenchman

billeting Subban brothers

Belleville’s hockey history





35 36


Sports Hall of Fame the Golden Jet


they start off young


honouring Hasty P Regiment BUILD BELLEVILLE

project highlights

Here’s a classic photo we found of the Belleville Junior O.H.A. Hockey Team 1911 - 12. (left to right) BACK: W. Finkle - Right Wing, V. Brown - Spare, W. Wallace - Rover, R. Wilson - Left Wing MIDDLE: A. Moore - Cover Point and Captain, W. Britton - Manager, R.C. Arnott, E. Whalen - Centre, R. Fitzgerald - Goal FRONT: L. Gunter - Spare and R. Tuite, Point W.S. Clarke, Photo 1

MEMORIAL MEMORIES part of City’s history for over 70 years

Built in 1929, the Memorial Arena was originally named the Hume Arena but was renamed in 1947 as a dedication to those who died in the First and Second World Wars. Throughout the years the arena at 15 Market Street was known to many famous hockey players and was home to the 1958 Allan Cup Senior Hockey League and the 1959 World Champions, ‘The Belleville McFarlands’.



Belleville McFarlands

world champions BY: JAMES HURST

The road to the World Championships was not an easy one for the Belleville McFarlands. Hockey had always been an important part of winter in Belleville, dating back even to the 19th century. But once the Memorial Arena was built, a beautiful structure that would hold almost 3,000 fans, there was a renewed interest in the game. Belleville was involved in various Senior and Intermediate hockey leagues prior to the formation of the McFarlands. For seven years, Belleville had played in a “Senior B” loop. Team manager Drury Denyes dreamed of seeing the team play for the Allan Cup. In order to do so, they had to step up to the “Senior A” level. With Floyd Crawford already on the team, Denyes looked for a leader. He found that individual in North Bay, playing in the Northern League. His name was Armand “Bep” Guidolin. One of the first players they picked up was a defenceman from Quebec, Maurice “Moe” Benoit. A fearless individual, Benoit was well known for his hip checks. The boards were not high at the Memorial Arena. There was no glass protecting the fans from the play. Benoit often timed his check perfectly, sending opponents into the laps of the front row fans, much to the delight of the home town supporters. Hilary “Minnie” Menard proved to be a valuable acquisition for the fledgling team. He scored his 50th goal in the last game of the season, and led the team with 78 points. The Timmins native had played junior hockey in Barrie and Galt, and played one game in the NHL with the Chicago Black Hawks. Keith MacDonald and Dave Jones were the only local players to move from the “Senior B” ranks to the McFarlands. Jones was a smooth skating forward who could put the puck in the net. MacDonald was as tough as they came. In November, Belleville added another valuable component, goaltender Gordie Bell. Just after Christmas, Denyes was able to ink Peterborough native Ike Hildebrand. He had NHL experience with the Rangers and the Black Hawks. He fitted in nicely with Menard and Jean Paul Payette. The Macs upset the Cornwall Chevies in their first playoff series, but fell to Whitby in the second round. The Dunlops went on to win the Allan Cup, then headed overseas to the World Championships, which they won. In the fall of 1957, the Macs added several key players to their lineup. Barton Bradley, Wayne “Weiner” Brown, Eddie Marineau, Russ Kowalchuk, Lionel Botly, Keith Montgomery, Joe Lepine and Johnny Muretich.


Following a successful season, the Macs played the Kingston CKLCs in the first round of the playoffs, trouncing them 9-0 in the seventh and deciding game. They then faced the Pembroke Lumber Kings in the Eastern OHA final, winning in six games. Their next opponent was the South Porcupine Porkies. They won that series in three games straight. The All Ontario final was against the Kitchener Waterloo Dutchmen. The Macs disposed of them in five games. The Eastern Canada final was a somewhat quirky affair. The Macs bombed Levis, Quebec 12-3 and 6-0. At that point, officials from the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association declared the series over, and Belleville then faced Kelowna for the Allan Cup. They beat the Packers 8-5 in the final game to secure the Cup. They arrived home to a throng of almost 50,000 people, rode in convertibles down Front Street, sporting their white cowboy hats. Before they headed to Europe in late January, several players were added: “Red” Berenson, Pete Conacher, John McLellan, Billy Graham, Denis Boucher. George “Goose” Gosselin, Al Dewsbury, Lou Smrke, Jean Paul Lamirande, Fiori Goegan and Marv Edwards. The Macs played most of their games in Prague, Czechoslovakia. Following the preliminary round, they faced Russia, the United States, Czechoslovakia, Sweden and Finland. In the deciding game against Russia on the 10th of March, 1959, Boucher, Benoit and Hildebrand scored for the Macs to lead them to a 3-1 victory. The headlines in The Intelligencer simply read: “Macs World Champs”! Again, they arrived home to a tumultuous crowd. They were paraded down Front Street in convertibles as World Champions. Sports Editor George Carver wrote in The Intelligencer:

“In their brief, but brilliant comet-like streak across the hockey horizon, they defeated the best senior clubs in the nation to win the Allan Cup, and go on to World honours in Prague.” 5


The history of the Bobcats is really a tale of two cities. The team began playing in 1972, at the Junior B level, but moved to Trenton when the Belleville Bulls began playing at the Quinte Sports Centre in 1981. They returned to Belleville for a brief period from 1987 to 1989. At that point in time, the team was purchased and moved to Wellington, and became the Dukes, a franchise which still exists.

dropped for the third period, it was always a little foggy. Bob Temple, a Belleville lawyer, served for several years as owner and assistant manager. No one served hockey in Belleville longer, nor more diligently than trainer Chris Rutledge. He began as a stick boy, then became trainer for the Bobcats and the Bulls. Bob Ricketts, Doug Murray, Russ Soule, George Rutledge, and Ted Soule all helped out in the early days.

The very nature of junior hockey is that players are together for a short period of time. Most of the time, they get two or three years with the same teammates. Occasionally, a player might get a fourth year as an “overage” player. For most of the Bobcats, the team concept was critical. Once a Bobcat, always a Bobcat.

Bob Boyle and Meehan Bonnar coached the team for one year. Moe Hunter and Floyd Crawford served longer terms behind the bench, Floyd was coaching when the Bobcats, then out of Trenton, captured the Sutherland Cup. They defeated the Windsor Bulldogs in four straight games to win the Ontario Championship.

There was junior hockey in Belleville prior to the 1972 season. The team was called the Fairways, who played with moderate success. Once the 1972-73 season got underway, that all changed. The managers, coaches, and the owners had experienced the frenzy that went with the experience with the McFarlands. They knew that if they put an exciting brand of hockey on the ice at the Memorial Arena, they could attract good crowds. And so they did.

The team from 1975-76 won the league championship, knocking off their opponents from the Metro Junior “B” League. The Toronto area teams did not enjoy playing in Belleville. The crowds were enthusiastic, perhaps intimidating. Many future NHL stars made appearances at the Memorial, including Wayne Gretzky. He slipped three goals in the Belleville net, but was outscored by Eric Powell of the Bobcats.

Fans lined up to watch the Bobcats, but Jim “Snipe” Matthews, longtime team manager, made sure the crowds never exceeded the capacity. Smoking was permitted in those days, and when the puck was


The Bobcats were a stepping stone for young Belleville boys to move on to many different levels of hockey: American scholarships for some, professional ranks for others. Fond memories of the great game of hockey.

O.H.A. Senior



During the late 60’s and early 70’s senior hockey was very popular. Other teams included arch rivals Kingston Aces, Barrie Flyers, Orillia Terriers, Galt Hornets, Brantford Forresters, just to name a few. Belleville was always led by their captain, Ralph Plane. Often playing with no shoulder pads, he won the battles in the corners, front of the net and was regarded as the league’s toughest fighter. His style and fights are still talked about in the coffee shops today. The late Steve Rexe came to Belleville to play goal. He had been with the L.A. Kings organization and the Canadian National Team. With his Peterborough connections, his brother Mike Rexe followed, along with others such as George Godson, Lorne O’Donnell, Ray Johnston and rugged defenceman Greg Marchen who played lacross in the summer for the Peterborough Lakers. The Mohawks with travel, equipment costs etc. could not continue financially and Ken Murphy, owner of the Hotel Quinte became involved, changing the name to the Belleville Quintes. With the core of the players still with the team, financial issues were still present and with the popularity of the Belleville Bobcats, attendance at the rink dwindled. It became the Screaming Eagles when a group of citizens lead by Gary Rock, Ted Soule and Bill Thompson, took over trying to make it a community owned team with hundreds of local business people making donations to keep the team alive. It was the ‘73- ‘74 season when mid way through the season the team was not able to meet financial commitments and the team folded after the Christmas break - ending that hockey era.



love their hockey


The Belleville fans’ love for hockey and their overwhelming support for their City teams has always been a part of their DNA but it was whipped into a frenzy for the McFarlands, continued throughout the Bulls era and is now focused on cheering the Belleville Senators to victory. When the McFarlands returned home from Europe as World Champions they were greeted by a parade of thousands of welcoming, cheering fans. The streets were lined with people from Belleville and the surrounding communities, all eager to show their pride and support of the players who put their team on the international hockey map.


When the Bulls OHL team became a part of the Belleville community there was a resurgence of fan adrenalin. A group of especially dedicated fans bonded through their shared passion for the team and formed what became known as the Belleville Bulls Booster Club. In addition to encouraging home game support through promotions and engagement activities at the games, the Club arranged for carloads (and busloads during playoff season) to travel to away games in support of their team. The Belleville Bulls became known on the road for their powerful entourage – the team with the loyal fans.


When the Bulls moved, the Club was understandably saddened and spirits dropped but it did not take long for them to regroup and take action. Public meetings were held, and a list of 6,000 signatures was presented to City Hall to show the community support for a Belleville hockey team and the group’s AARON BELL commitment to assist in making that happen. And it has! The fans in their eagerness to embrace the City’s new AHL team, the Belleville Senators, did not wait for the first home game. The group quickly jumped into action and on Family Day in February 2017 filled five, fifty-six seat buses and headed to the Air Canada Centre in Toronto to cheer on their new team as they played the Toronto Marlies, returning in March with continued support.

“We as an organization have offered our support to our new AHL team and look forward to helping them in every way we possibly can.” GINA GIOUROUKOS


the imprint left by

OUR BELLEVILLE BULLS Noting there were over 1,000 players recorded on the Belleville Bull’s team roster throughout its history in Belleville it becomes easier to understand the impact the team had on the community. They started as a Junior Tier II team in the OHA in 1979 and quickly gained attention when they won the Tier II title in their second season in 1980–81. The Bulls went on to compete in the national championship in Halifax, Nova Scotia for the Manitoba Centennial Trophy, losing in the finals. The OHL granted an expansion franchise to the City of Belleville in 1981 and the ownership group of Dr. Robert L. Vaughan and Bob Dolan. Dr. Vaughan remained an owner/ co-owner of the team until he sold to Gord Simmonds in 2004. In 1983, Belleville hosted the OHL All-Star Game (or the OHL Chrysler Cup as it was known then). The Bulls reached the OHL finals in 1986 - and in 1995 and 1996, the Bulls lost in the semi-finals. Fans remember 1999 as the year the Bulls were on fire. They defeated the London Knights 9–2 in game seven of the OHL championship series at the Yardmen Arena to win their first ever J. Ross Robertson Cup. Also that year they competed in the Memorial Cup in Ottawa, finishing third, losing in the semifinal. The Bulls celebrated their 25th anniversary in the OHL during the 2005-2006 season. The team also hosted the annual OHL All-Star game for the second time, on February 1, 2006. The Bulls set a season-best record of 102 points earned during the 2007–08 regular season. Leading the team from 1981 until 1997 was Coach Larry Mavety, followed by Lou Crawford from 1997 to 2000, then Jim Hulton until 2003, with George Burnett at the helm from 2004 until 2015. The Belleville Bulls earned the support and dedication of many in our community. Young hockey players were inspired. Game nights were awaited in anticipation. Their place in our community will long be remembered.





25 year hockey adventure

In 1979 Bob Dolan and Larry Mavety approached Dr. Robert L. Vaughan and other potential investors to buy shares in the Tier ll Belleville Bulls. At that time, Dr. Vaughan (known to many as Doc) had no way of knowing his decision to purchase one $2,500 share was about to completely change his life, Q: taking him and his family on an amazing 25 year adventure. Q: When you initially bought shares in the Bulls they were a Tier ll team, how and when did the transition to OHL take place? A: “In 1981 the Ontario Hockey League was looking to expand. At that time the franchise fee was $300,000. I went before the board, applied for an OHL franchise and within a few months received word we’d been accepted as a new franchise team.” Q: Twenty-five years would without question, hold many exhilarating moments. Can you share a couple? A: “Drafting the first overall draft pick for the Bulls – Dan Quinn. We were a new team and had first pick that year.” AND “Partnering with Wayne Gretzky for two years as co-owners of the Bulls. We met in Montreal. Wayne’s father Walter said Wayne wasn’t feeling well and asked me to see him. Wayne asked if there was a team for sale in our league. I mentioned Bob Dolan was interested in selling his half share in the Bulls. A call was made. The deal was done. Within two years Wayne approached me, asking to buy my shares also. I felt it was important for the team to have local ownership and by the time the conversation ended – I had bought Wayne’s shares in the team, becoming the majority owner.”

We ran the team as if the community owned it.

They felt they had a voice in the way things went. The team drew the community together and united

it in a powerful way.



It must have been exciting and rewarding for you to see so many players advance from the Bulls to careers as professional hockey players? A: “Close to 1,000 players came through the team while we were involved. Many went on to play in the NHL, AHL, CHL and others. Each time one of our players advanced we were greatly excited and extremely proud of their success!“ Q: The challenges of juggling your family time with team demands - in addition to your medical practice could not have been easy. How did you maintain balance in your life? A: “Although the team was a huge part of my life for 25 years, my family was included and we had fun doing so. We billeted players and hosted picnics and Christmas parties at our home for the team, their families and many faithful fans. We continue to enjoy many of these friendships and share special occasions such as weddings & milestone birthdays.”

I wish the Belleville Senators every success.

I’m always excited to see good hockey - this will be GOOD hockey!

Did You Know Doc Was;

Chairman of the Board of Governors of Ontario Hockey League for 10 years Vice-Chairman of Ontario Hockey League’s executive council for two seasons. Recipient of the OHL’s prestigious Bill Long Award for Distinguished Service. 1993 Inductee into the Belleville Sports Hall of Fame. Introduced the Gretzky & Orr Trophies to be presented to Conference Champions. First OHL owner to give graduating players gold team rings.


showcased in new location

The Belleville Sports Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization dedicated to recognizing, honouring and preserving the record of outstanding achievements accomplished by the City’s elite athletes and builders from all eras, and displaying them on a permanent basis. The Hall of Fame is housed in the Dr. R. L. Vaughan Atrium at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Center. The 22nd Induction Ceremony for the Belleville Sports Hall of Fame was held on September 16th, 2017 at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre in the new Dr. R. L. Vaughan Atrium. The dedication to Dr. Vaughan was part of the festivities to express the City’s sincere appreciation to Doc and his family for their generous support of the Hall of Fame. This year’s inductees included two NHL players: Rob Ray and Chris Valentine, in addition to the 1962 Belleville Kenmors baseball team, weightlifter Joel Carr-Braint, swimmer Paula (Stephanson) Duggan and ice technician/ rock expert ‘Shorty’ Jenkins.

“We are honoured to have The Belleville Sports Hall of Fame permanently displayed at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre recognizing the outstanding achievements of Belleville’s athletes, past and present. We thank the Committee for their commitment to preserving the sporting history of the Quinte Region, and for spearheading the new home of the Hall of Fame, ensuring the history and artifacts of athletes, builders and teams are easily accessible to all visitors.” Mayor Taso Christopher For further information regarding the Belleville Sports Hall of Fame visit:




When Floyd Crawford first moved to Belleville in 1957, he had a feeling it was going to be a good fit for him. More than half a century later, Crawford and his family’s legacy are part of the history of our community. Floyd came from the salt mines in Northern Quebec to play for the upstart Belleville McFarlands. He helped the team win the Senior A Canadian championship Allen Cup in 1958 and then the World Championship for Canada in 1959. Those championship wins helped to define his family tree and Crawford’s nine children all took that legacy seriously. The Crawfords have likely won more hockey championship trophies than any other family in the world.


The Memorial Cup, Robertson Cup, Turner Cup, Stanley Cup, Allen Cup, Sutherland Cup and Calder Cup. These trophies symbolize hockey champions at virtually every level of the game across North America. Every one of them has the Crawford name on them. The most recent addition to the family championship trophy case is the Nationalliga A championship trophy that Marc Crawford helped Zurich win in 2015.

“Living in Belleville under what Floyd had accomplished as a hockey player was something that we really didn't take notice of at the beginning,” said Lou, who won the Memorial Cup as a player with the Kitchener Rangers and then coached the Belleville Bulls to their only OHL championship in 1999. “We appreciated it more as we grew up and when we ventured off into our different fields.” The children all inherited Floyd’s never-back-down competitiveness but they also point to their mother Pauline’s athletic ability and determination as an important part of their development as athletes and people. Right from the start, the Crawford kids learned how to play to win. “There were always lessons about sports, but life too,” said Danielle Yohn, the second youngest of the Crawford children. “Through sport you learn a lot about life. Teamwork, defeat and camaraderie. We learned that sitting at the kitchen table every night for dinner.” While Marc is chasing the Stanley Cup with the Ottawa Senators, youngest sibling Eric is doing his best to help build the Montreal Canadiens into a championship contender. Lou is also still in the game, working as a scout with the Vancouver Canucks. Eric and Lou are still based in Belleville. Bob is sharing his hockey knowledge in a different way, helping thousands of youngsters learn the game in his rinks in the Hartford, CT area.


Front row (from left) Danielle, Pauline, Floyd, Eric, Susan Back row: Bob, Peter, Marc, Todd, Lou and Michael

They all bring the lessons that Floyd and Pauline gave them in their youth. “There wasn’t a game that he didn’t think he couldn’t win,” said Bob, who played parts of seven seasons in the National Hockey League and scored a career-high 36 goals and 61 points with the Hartford Whalers in 1983-84. “There wasn’t a level that he didn’t think that kids were able to reach.” Todd Crawford is a teacher at Moira Secondary School and coached Canada’s team when Belleville hosted the World Under-19 Floorball championships in 2016. Crawford and his team were fantastic ambassadors for the City of Belleville to the 15 visiting teams from around the world. He saw the same qualities in his parents during his childhood.

“There were always lessons about sports, but life too,” said Danielle Yohn, the second youngest of the Crawford children. “Through sport you learn a lot about life. Teamwork, defeat and camaraderie. We learned that sitting at the kitchen table every night for dinner.”


“My parents were fantastic ambassadors in the city,” Todd said. “My mother especially was always making sure we were towing the line and going to school and going to church. We always managed to not embarrass my mother too much.”

The Crawford name has become synonymous with the City of Belleville. While many of the Crawfords are spread out across North America – and Italy in oldest sibling Susan’s case – they all carry a bit of Belleville with them wherever they go.


“My dad and mom have always said that Belleville is a great place to raise kids and it really is,” said Marc, whose son Dylan is a video coach for the Belleville Senators and recently moved to Belleville. “You think about how many advantages there are to being in a community like Belleville. It’s got a great hometown feel yet it’s close enough to all the amenities of bigger cities whether it’s Kingston down the road, Ottawa is not too far away or certainly Toronto. I think it’s perfectly situated and it’s a beautiful spot.” IKE HILDEBRAND AND FLOYD CRAWFORD SHARE A DRINK FROM THE ALLAN CUP




He brought the Stanley Cup to Belleville then and he desperately wants another shot at doing it again. “It was a great experience,” Crawford said. “But my goal is to get there again.”

When Marc Crawford accepted the associate coaching job with the Ottawa Senators, he saw it as a chance to get back into the hunt for a prize that he’s been chasing for more than two decades. Crawford was looking for a chance to win the Stanley Cup again after guiding the Colorado Avalanche to hockey’s top prize in 1996 and after five years away from the National Hockey League, the Senators’ call was a welcome one.

It started with a pair of Memorial Cup championships as the captain of the Cornwall Royals in the late 1980’s. He helped the Vancouver Canucks get to the Stanley Cup finals in 1982 and then as a young coach, helped the St. John’s Maple Leafs get to the Calder Cup finals a decade later. In his second season behind the bench in the NHL, Crawford hoisted the Stanley Cup with the Avalanche.

In his first season behind the bench with head coach Guy Boucher, Crawford helped the Senators to a 44-win season followed by a dramatic playoff run that ended in a double-overtime loss to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins in game seven of the Eastern Conference final. It was a giant step forward for a team that had missed the playoffs the previous season. The 56-year-old Belleville native has coached in more than 1,200 games in the NHL. He won the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s top coach in 1994-95 and guided the Colorado Avalanche to a Stanley Cup win in their first season in Denver. He brought the Stanley Cup to Belleville then and he desperately wants another shot at doing it again. “It was a great experience,” Crawford said. “But my goal is to get there again.” And if anyone knows how to win a championship, it’s Crawford.


Belleville native Derek Smith played a season under Crawford with the Zurich Lions in the Swiss A-League and said that he was thankful for the short time they spent together. “The biggest thing with him is that he is emotional which is great as a coach,” Smith said. “He played the game which helps but just having him behind the bench - he has a feel for the game and it really helps a lot. He is such a great person and he definitely helped me out a lot in my career in just the short time we were together.” Crawford is looking forward to seeing how the Senators’ top prospects develop here in Belleville with the newlyarrived American Hockey League team. He was a sounding board for dozens of the conversations that led to the team moving here to start the 2017-18 season as the Senators’ top affiliate.

The Senators front office is once again led by General Manager Randy Lee and Head Coach Kurt Kleinendorst, who are both coming over from Binghamton in their same roles. Rounding out the inaugural season staff is Paul Boutilier as Assistant Coach, Jeremy Benoit as the team’s Strength and Conditioning Coach, Dylan Crawford as Video Coach, Kory Cooper as Goaltending Development Consultant, Craig Belfer as Athletic Therapist, Matthew Mitchell as Equipment Manager and Michael Boyes as Assistant Equipment Manager. Furthermore, Shean Donovan, the Ottawa Senators’ Player Development Coach, holds the same role with the Belleville Senators. “We’re excited about the staff we’ve assembled for our inaugural AHL season in Belleville,” Lee said. “We have a well-rounded group with plenty of experience and success in the American Hockey League and we know they are eager to begin the next chapter of development in our organization.”


The Belleville Senators are proud to announce their inaugural hockey operations staff for the American Hockey League season.

Benoit worked the past two seasons as an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for both the Ottawa Senators and the Binghamton Senators while also being responsible for player development for the Wichita Thunder and Evansville Iceman of the East Coast Hockey League. Crawford is now in his second year with the Senators franchise after spending last year in Binghamton. Cooper is also in his second year with the Senators and has previously worked in the Ontario Hockey League as goaltending coach for the Kingston Frontenacs and Mississauga Steelheads.

The Senators’ hockey operations staff comes with a wealth of previous AHL and professional hockey experience.

Belfer was previously the head therapist for the Belleville Bulls and has also worked with the Frontenacs.

Lee has been with the Ottawa Senators organization for the past 23 years, and was named the Binghamton Senators’ General Manager in January 2014. Kleinendorst has previously coached the Albany Devils, Iowa Wild and the Binghamton Senators, where he led the team to the Calder Cup title in 2011.

Mitchell has spent 12 seasons in the AHL working for the Binghamton Rangers, Lowell Devils, Oklahoma City Barons and Binghamton Senators. He also spent time in the NHL with the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils as an assistant equipment manager.

Boutilier, who won a Stanley Cup in 1983 as a player with the New York Rangers, played 208 games in the AHL and joins the Senators for his first professional coaching position from the Saint John Sea Dogs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Donovan, a veteran of 951 NHL games who retired after the 2009-10 season, is working alongside Lee in overseeing the progress of prospects in Belleville.

Boyes is entering his second year with the Senators but previously spent time as the head equipment manager for the OHL’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. The Belleville Senators serve as the primary professional development affiliate of the Ottawa Senators in the National Hockey League. Its home games are in the newly renovated Yardmen Arena. Follow the Belleville Senators on our official Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages via @BellevilleSens, or visit us at


Belleville Senators hockey has officially begun. The Sens opened their inaugural regular season in Laval, falling in backto-back games Oct. 6 and 7. The Senators were beaten by the Rocket, who are also a debuting AHL franchise this season, 3-0 in their first game before losing 6-2 the next night. Despite a winless weekend, plenty of history was made including defenceman Thomas Chabot scoring the first goal in franchise history. Goaltender Danny Taylor made 58 saves over the two games while Chabot and Chris DiDomenico each had two points. The two teams had previously met in preseason games Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 with the Senators winning 3-1 before losing 7-5 to close out their season preparations. The Sens and Rocket will square off 12 times over the course of the regular season with Laval coming to Belleville the first time on Nov. 29. Tickets are available at


The Belleville Senators announced that 13 companies have come to terms with the team on a corporate partnership agreement for the team’s historic inaugural 2017-18 American Hockey League season. Featuring six preferred partners and seven supporting partners, the Senators are pleased to confirm this initial phase of partnership agreements. Preferred Partners • • • • • •

Gay Lea Foods Co-Operative Leon’s Trenton McDougall Insurance and Financial Rhino Sports & Playland Save On Energy Shoeless Joe’s Sports Grill

• • • • • • •

A-1 Limousine Belleville Toyota Carpenters Union Local 397 Loyalist College Mackay Insurance Pizza Pizza Shorelines Casino

Supporting Partners

“We are delighted to officially announce our first group of

corporate partners for our inaugural season here in Belleville and the Bay of Quinte,” said Rob Mullowney, Belleville Senators Chief Operating Officer. “We thank them all for their shared vision and stepping up as true community leaders in helping us deliver on our goal of bringing the AHL to our entire region. We look forward to sharing more news in the weeks and months to come on the other agreements that we are currently working on.” The Senators continue to actively seek other partnership agreements with businesses across the Bay of Quinte and Canada. Companies interested in getting involved with the Belleville Senators can take advantage of opportunities at all levels of investment from small business packages to premium hosting opportunities, right up to the prestigious naming rights opportunity for the Belleville Senators home arena. “We take tremendous pride in the quality, value proposition and integrity of our partnership program,” said Mullowney. “We take the time to listen to a company’s objectives and will always tailor our agreements based on the objectives of the partner regardless of the level of investment. Our door is open and we look forward to hearing from any companies that may have an interest in our program.”


KYLE FLANAGAN ready for fresh start

It was a career year in 2016-17 for Kyle Flanagan but he’s still ready for a change of scenery. No, he’s not switching teams per-se. But with the Binghamton Senators relocation to Belleville as the Ottawa Senators’ American Hockey League affiliate, the 28-yearold is excited to be in a new city, and in Canada. “I’m excited for a new change of scenery, a new city and a new fan base,” Flanagan said. “I know the city is very excited for us to come in and especially for us, we have had some down years missing the playoffs and I think we’re ready for a change of pace and to start fresh. “We’re really going to embrace the city and it’s going to be great to have very excited and loyal fans.” Flanagan scored a career-high 29 points last season including nine goals, also a new career high. The Canton, NY., native has registered 22 goals and 78 points in 188 AHL games. “I had a good summer and have started in pretty good shape,” Flanagan said. “I’m getting older and getting a bit more playing time and earned the trust of the coaches and then got put in situations where you’re able to put up points and make plays.” However, it wasn’t always an easy path back to the AHL for Flanagan. After a four-year career with St. Lawrence University, Flanagan played 76 AHL games for the Adirondack Phantoms. But in 2014, Flanagan found himself in Sweden playing for MODO in the Swedish Hockey League. In 38 games, Flanagan had 15 points (four goals) but picked up some invaluable experience along the way too. “Sweden is definitely a different style of play and is more about the gameplay systems,” Flanagan said. “It’s more about possession because it’s such a big rink. Change of


possession is such a big key and you’ve got to hold onto it, so that helps you down low and in the neutral zone in not getting rid of the puck. “And when you do, you make sure it’s going from my stick to another teammates and not ending up as a turnover.” After a lone year in Europe, Flanagan’s return to North America took him back to Adirondack but this time to the East Coast Hockey League. But it took just 12 games to be back in the AHL where he joined the Binghamton Senators and took home the team’s Seventh Man of the Year Award at season’s end. “Even though I was an older guy and in my third year, whenever you get an award like that it usually comes from the players which means the most because you have the respect of your teammates. You want the respect of your coaches but you’re playing with the guy next to you - so the biggest thing for me was they respected my effort coming up and earning that contract.” Earn that contract he did. Flanagan was rewarded with a two-year AHL contract and heads into year two of his deal in Belleville where improving on a career year is on the forefront of his mind. “I just want to keep on improving. That’s what it is every year. Every year you get a little more confident, more experience and you look to build off each year and you always want to make improvements to your game whether it’s offensively, defensively or special teams.”

BELLEVILLE SENATORS announce inaugural roster The Belleville Senators are pleased to announce its inaugural roster for the 2017-18 American Hockey League season. The 26-man squad features four goalies, eight defencemen and 14 forwards. The team will be captained by Mike Blunden. “We want to have a good team and I think we do,” head coach Kurt Kleinendorst said. “We have some internal competition which is always helpful so I think it forces guys to be the best they can be and if they’re not, there’s someone around who can take their spot.” The squad features 14 players who have previous NHL experience. Furthermore, the 26-man roster has played 3,125 games at the AHL level. The roster is built primarily around draft picks of the team’s NHL affiliate Ottawa Senators. Fourteen (14) players were Ottawa selections in NHL drafts, eight players were signed by Ottawa as free agents, three players are signed to American Hockey League contracts and one player was obtained in a trade by Ottawa. While Jim O’Brien is playing under a professional try out agreement, he is among the team’s 14 players to be drafted by Ottawa. A veteran of 528 AHL games, as well as 126 NHL games, Blunden will be the first captain in Belleville Senators franchise history. It will mark his second straight season of being named captain under Kleinendorst. The Sens started the season with nine straight games on the road before returning home November 1 to face the Syracuse Crunch at the Yardmen Arena.


exciting changes made to

YA R D M E N A R E N A The past few months have been a flurry of activity at the Yardmen Arena as preparations were made to accommodate the Belleville Senators AHL franchise. The renovations included repairing the boards, the floor refrigeration system, increasing the arena's capacity to 4,400, a new NHL-sized rink, a new home team dressing room, a new refrigeration system, a new score clock, new washrooms and a new public entrance. The hours were long and hard as crews worked diligently to meet the commitment of finishing on time for the November 1st puck drop in Belleville. Let the games begin!




all within 11 months-

W H AT A J O U R N E Y ! 25


It’s hard to imagine that Rick Meagher could have possibly had a bigger impact off the ice than he did on it. The Belleville native played in nearly 700 games in the National Hockey League after graduating from Boston College. He was an NHL team captain, won the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the NHL’s top defensive forward and scored 144 goals and 309 points in his 12-year career. That’s a pretty impressive resume by any standards. But it was off the ice where Meagher made his biggest and most lasting contribution to his community. Meagher spearheaded the Rick Meagher Celebrity Classic, which later became the Medigas Celebrity Classic, and raised $3 million to help local children’s charities over the 30-year history of the tournament.

Rick is one of nine kids from the Al and Doreen Meagher household. His older brother Terry also played at Boston College and went on to coach 33 seasons at Bowdoin College in Maine.

He started the tournament with his friend John Pepper to help Pepper’s daughter, who had juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.

The kids all grew up playing hockey together – either on the street in the warmer months or at the Memorial Arena in the winter.

“From Day One, all of my buddies were involved as volunteers,” Meagher said. “It was a lot of hard work but it paid off in the long run. We raised some money for the kids and had some fun. Every time I asked somebody to donate or to volunteer, they would line up to do it.”

“When I was growing up, it was about the people of Belleville for sure,” Meagher said. “They were so friendly. Everybody in my neighbourhood growing up on North Park Street, they all had rinks in the winter time. All the kids knew each other. The people were great.”

On the ice, Rick started his NHL career as a free agent with the Montreal Canadiens in 1980. He spent parts of three seasons with the Hartford Whalers and then three seasons with the New Jersey Devils before moving to the St. Louis Blues in 1985. He had six seasons with the Blues and helped them make the playoffs every year he was there.


Meagher typically found his way back to Belleville in the off-season and after retiring from a pro scouting career, he still spends a lot of his time in Belleville. “I just like the area,” said Meagher, who frequently played in the South Hastings Baseball League in the off-season. “It’s a great place to come in the summer. It was a great place to grow up.”


to our home BY: MARILYN WARREN

The welcoming nature of Belleville residents has been reflected in the community’s willingness throughout the years to share their homes with hockey players. As billets, these households have provided a home away from home for the athletes. One of these individuals is Amy McMillan. Amy and her son Johnathan shared their home with the three Subban brothers.

“Perhaps the most important thing we gained by having P.K., Jordan and Malcolm stay with us over that period of time was the example they set for my son Johnathan. He saw firsthand how hard the three of them worked to achieve what they have. They knew what they wanted and worked very hard to get there. Johnathan saw what it takes to succeed. “Through the boys we met a lot of really great people, including their family. I’m excited about the new team as this will give us a chance to get together with the three of them again here in Belleville. “I just wanted them to succeed as much as I want my own son to be successful – and they have done that – that gives me the best feeling ever. I just feel lucky to have been a part of that!”

Amy McMillan




Who knew that the founding father of the Montreal Canadiens, Jean-Baptiste (Jack) Laviolette – first captain, head coach and manager – was born and raised right here in Belleville. Undoubtedly he learned to skate on the Bay of Quinte at the doorstep of his Rossmore home and went on to become the first French Canadian hockey superstar. In the late 1800s, Belleville was a lumber town and the Moira River was jammed every springtime with thousands of logs being carried to the harbour from the great forests of central Hastings County. The magnificent, tall white pine logs were assembled into great rafts to be floated down the Bay and the St. Lawrence to Quebec for export to Britain where many became masts of the ships of the Royal Navy. The rest were sawn into lumber in the many sawmills that ringed the harbour. Many of these loggers and lumber mill workers were French Canadians, including the family of Antoine and Elizabeth Laviolette. Jean-Baptiste (Jack) Laviolette was born on 17 July 1879, the sixth of eight children and was baptized at St. Michael’s Church ten days later. His family lived near the lumber mill located near the ferry landing at Rossmore and attended a school built on the mill site. By the 1890s, the forests were largely depleted and the lumber industry declined; many mills closed. When Antoine Laviolette lost his job in 1893, the family returned to Quebec and settled at Valleyfield. Jack Laviolette excelled as an amateur and rose to professional ranks with the American Soo Indians of the International Hockey League. When the National Hockey Association (forerunner of the NHL) was formed, it was decided to establish a team in Montreal. Laviolette was given the task of assembling a team of francophone players


– the origins of the great Montreal Canadiens dynasty. Among the early players recruited by Laviolette were Edouard “Newsy” Lalonde and Didier “Cannonball” Pitre who formed the famous Flying Frenchmen. The Canadiens won the Stanley Cup in 1916. (In total won 24 Stanley Cups, more than any other team). Jack Laviolette’s hockey career was shortened when he lost a foot in a car accident in 1919. He died in Montreal in 1960 and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame posthumously in 1962. The Ontario Heritage Trust honoured the three Ontario-born Flying Frenchmen, installing memorial plaques in their hometowns. The plaque for Jack Laviolette was unveiled in June 2016 and stands at the entrance to the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre.


BY: MARILYN WARREN From the time he learned to skate as a Tim Bit, on through the minor Bobcats and Quinte AAA Red Devils, the OHL Niagara IceDogs, and Owen Sound Attack, Andrew applied a grit and determination that propelled him on to the AHL, first with the Chicago Blackhawks farm team the Rockford Icehogs, then the Blackhawks and now the Montreal Canadiens.


As his hometown, Belleville was ecstatic to welcome him to the City not once, but twice, when he proudly returned home with the Stanley Cup he won with the Blackhawks in 2013 and 2015.

Mark Reeds (Andrew’s Coach when he played in Owen Sound) “It was Mark Reeds who helped me develop my playing style which had a huge impact on my hockey career.”

Known for his physical playing style, coaches and fans applaud what Andrew brings to the game. Joel Quenneville, who coached Shaw in Chicago, praised Shaw by stating, “You’re not going to find the same ingredient that [Shaw] provides, whether it’s the game-to-game consistency of being an agitator, net-front presence on your power play, good in the room, good on the bench, good on the ice, smart hockey player, makes plays, brings that nastiness you appreciate and comes ready to play every game.”

His Parents, Doug and Darlene “Growing up I watched how hard my mom and dad worked so each of us could have the chance to play a sport we loved. There is no question that their work ethic helped to shape who I am today.”

Looking Ahead “I love hockey and want to work hard to improve. Chaunette and I were married this summer and it’s important to me to be able to provide for my family. I’m excited. I’m hungry. And I’m driven. I want that feeling of winning!”









Belleville Sports Hall of Fame


His skill at hockey opened the door for Chris Valentine to travel across North America and into Europe. Born in Belleville on December 6, 1961, Chris quickly displayed his talents in the Belleville Minor Hockey system, where he consistently put big numbers on the scoreboard. In 1978, he joined St. Louis University of the CCHA and in 34 games scored an impressive 27 goals. He was selected to the All CCHA 2nd Team. Relocating to Verdun’s Sorel Blackhawks in 1979, he had 48 goals in 72 games, and followed that up with 65 goals in 1980. His scoring prowess earned him a spot the following year with the NHL’s Washington Capitals where he scored 30 goals in 60 games, and established a Capital’s Rookie point scoring record that withstood the test of time until Alex Ovechkin came along. Over a three-year span, where Valentine split his time between the Capital’s and the AHL’s Hershey Bears, Chris had 43 goals and 52 assists in 105 NHL games. And then Europe came calling. In 1984, Valentine joined Dusseldorf EG of the German Bundesliga and over a 12-year period set the league on fire. He led the league in scoring 7 times, led Dusseldorf to 5 league championships and had his #10 retired by the team after ending his playing career. Following his retirement as a player, Valentine coached for five years in Germany, after which he returned to Canada, where he is in the financial services business. He is active with the Ottawa Senators Alumni Association.


Rob Ray has put Stirling and surrounding area on the map. Born in Belleville on June 8, 1968, Ray grew up in Stirling, hitting the ice in the Stirling Minor Hockey system at age three and joining a travelling team at age five. Moving on to the Trenton Bob Cats, Whitby Lawmen, and OHL’s Cornwall Royals, he turned pro with the Rochester Americans. After two seasons with the Americans, Ray joined the Buffalo Sabres, staying for 14 years, before ending his career with the Ottawa Senators in 2003-04. He played 900 regular season games and 55 playoff games in the NHL. Regular season totals included 41 goals, 50 assists and 3207 minutes in penalties. As his broadcasting partner Brian Duff said, “Rob took the hard way to the NHL, taking on all comers…as evidenced by his position as #6 all time in NHL penalty minutes.” Ray has a major presence in Buffalo. He received the 1999 King Clancy Memorial Trophy, awarded annually to the NHL player best exemplifying leadership qualities on and off the ice, while making a significant humanitarian contribution to his community. He received the NHL Foundation Player Award the same year. Rob continues to give back in Western New York through involvement with police and volunteers who work to make Christmas a special time for needy families. Support for the Women and Children’s Hospital of Buffalo has resulted in “The Rob Ray Room”. Roswell Cancer Institute, March of Dimes, Make a Wish Foundation, the Rob Ray Scholarship Program and the Sabres Alumni Program exemplify his community involvement. Locally, he continues to be a strong supporter of the “Friends of Stirling Golf Tournament” which raises funds for Stirling Minor Hockey and various charities.


BOBBY HULL the Golden Jet

Born in Point Anne, hockey legend Bobby Hull first played hockey on the company sponsored outdoor rink behind his house during the winter months on the Bay of Quinte. He played in three leagues during his career; the Ontario Hockey League, the National Hockey League and the World Hockey Association. He joined the NHL in 1957 with the Chicago Blackhawks, then the WHA with the Winnipeg Jets and finished with the Hartford Whalers in 1980. He won the Hart Memorial Trophy as MVP twice, the Art Ross Trophy as top scorer three times, the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy and the Stanley Cup in 1961. He was named an All Star 13 times, scored 50 or more goals in 10 seasons and was Canada’s Male Athlete of the year in 1965 and 1966. His combined goal total in both the NHL and WHA was 1018 including playoffs. Hull was named to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983.


we start them young in


Many of our young hockey players got their start in the Belleville Minor Leagues, learning the preliminary skills in a teambuilding atmosphere. The mission of the Belleville Minor Hockey Association (BMHA) is to promote and provide a high quality, organized hockey experience for all of its participants - especially children and youth. These young players have proudly worn the jerseys of: Timbits - Tyke - Novice - Atom - PeeWee Bantam/Midget and Jr. Bulls Just to name a few. Quinte Regional Minor Hockey Association Quinte Red Devils AAA Consists of nine teams from Novice to Major Midget with a total of approximately 153 athletes. The Quinte AAA Zone was established by the Ontario Minor Hockey Association in 1989 and as a member of the Eastern Triple A Association within the OMHA, they compete against other teams within that region. Many former Quinte AAA have gone on to play in the NHL and OHL. The local Bearcats have close to 200 women ranging in age from five to 65 - comprised of both rep and house league teams. Bearcats have continued their hockey careers through hockey scholarships for college or university - or have played for Team Ontario or Team Canada. For the 3rd year the Bearcats, in partnership with Bauer Hockey, are hosting the Bauer First Shift program, introducing young women ages 6-10 to the great game of hockey. Thanks to the parents who spend countless hours in arenas, on the road and volunteering their time to support our young athletes.

here’s to the F U T U R E ! 35


On Saturday, September 23, the City of Belleville held a ceremony to dedicate the newly constructed Parkette located on the north side of the intersection of Bay Bridge Road and Dundas Street West to the Hastings and Prince Edward Regiment. Mayor Christopher and members of City Council were joined at the event by local Members of Parliament Neil Ellis and Mike Bossio and local Member of Provincial Parliament Todd Smith. The ceremony was attended by past and current serving members of the Regiment, including veterans from the Second World War. Those who took the podium spoke about the special place the Regiment has in the hearts of Canadians - as the military unit that was awarded more Battle Honours during World War II than any other Canadian Infantry Regiment – and in the hearts of Belleville residents who are proud to have the Regiment in their community. Today’s Hasty P’s continue to earn a reputation as competent professionals among their peers in the Canadian Armed Forces and dedicated community leaders as Reserve citizen soldiers.


The location of the Parkette and monument was chosen because it is situated prominently at the northern terminus of King’s Highway 62; which has been dedicated as the ‘Hastings & Prince Edward Regiment Commemorative Highway’. This prominent location will encourage all who drive by the site to remember the part that the Regiment has played, and is playing, to protect our democratic way of life. Design features of the Parkette and monument were inspired by the storied history of the Regiment and the battle honours received in Sicily, Italy where the Regiment served as the first combat deployment of a Canadian formation during the Second World War. The natural rock used to contain the planters and walkway serve as metaphors for their mountain attack at Assoro for which they were awarded a Battle Honour and the trees in the Parkette are reminiscent of the tall cypress trees of Sicily. The monument itself is framed by three native Canadian maple leaves that serve as the backdrop for a prominent display of the Regimental crest along with the historic shoulder tab bearing the name of the Regiment. The Parkette and dedication to the Hasty P’s was the finishing touch for the Dundas Street West and the Bay Bridge Road overpass project. During construction of the Parkette the project team conferred regularly with current serving members and veterans.

BUILD BELLEVILLE PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS This summer was a busy one for Build Belleville as one of the City’s most significant and complex projects was completed and another reached a major milestone. Dundas St. West/Bay Bridge Road Project If you haven’t been to the Dundas St. West/Bay Bridge intersection in Belleville in recent years or even recent months, you probably wouldn’t recognize it. This once congested and tired looking section of roadway in the City has been completely rebuilt and is now an efficient transportation portal through which approximately 25,000 commercial and personal vehicles travel through every day. This project was one of the most significant and complex for the City of Belleville because it involved major construction in the middle of one of the busiest intersections in the City and was in proximity to an active rail system. Funded in large part through infrastructure grants provided by the federal and provincial governments, this project is significant for the City of Belleville as it addresses local infrastructure priorities and greatly improves the traffic flow for local, tourist and commercial vehicles into the City and to the City core.

City Centre Revitalization and Redevelopment The revitalization of Belleville’s downtown core is now over two thirds finished with the substantial completion of the first half of Phase 3 - the third and final phase – nearing completion. Phase 3A is concentrated on Bridge Street East from Pinnacle to the Moira River. The section of Bridge Street East from Pinnacle to Front Street was designed to complement completed areas on Front Street using brick pavers, decorative bollards and up-lighting in granite planters. Phase 3B, which begins in the spring of 2018 will include work on McAnnany Street, Market Street and Front Street (from Bridge to Dundas). As with the first two phases, a substantial portion of Phase 3 includes the replacement of underground, aging infrastructure. The entire downtown revitalization project will be completed in 2018.


2017 - 2018 Inaugural Season @BellevilleSens

G R E AT C O M M U N I T Y E V E N T S Y O U D O N ’ T WA N T T O M I S S ! NOVEMBER LIGHTING DISPLAY LAUNCH Fri., Nov. 17th 6:00 PM Jane Forrester Park SANTA CLAUS PARADE Sun., Nov. 19th 4:30 PM

JANUARY LIGHTING DISPLAY MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT EVENINGS Wed. evenings launch until Christmas 6:30 PM Jane Forrester Park

NEW YEAR’S CIVIC LEVEE Mon., Jan. 1st 11:30 AM Quinte Sports & Wellness Centre gymnasium


SLEEP OUT SO OTHERS CAN SLEEP IN Fri., Jan. 26th 7 PM - 7 AM in Market Square

Belleville Magazine - Fall 2017