Story posted January 16, 2009
As Bowdoin's rich ice hockey tradition prepares to begin a new era in the Sidney J. Watson Arena, thoughts turn to the visionary leaders who built Dayton Arena back in 1956 and the skilled men and women drawn to coach and play in what was then a pioneering athletic facility.
An article in the Portland Press Herald's January 16, 2009, edition pays tribute to Dayton and the role it has played in collegiate hockey.
"It was hockey. For me, for a lot of people," said Secretary of Development and College Relations and former goalie John Cross '76 in the article.
"It's where all the magic happened. Where the enthusiasm got kindled."
The cornerstone from Dayton Arena, which was laid in June 1956 and removed in November 2008, is now part of a pedestal in the new Watson Arena lobby that displays another piece of Bowdoin Hockey history — the Zamboni Ice Re-Surfacer 400, affectionately dubbed "The Monster."
The article highlights fond memories and traces the rink's origins, noting that students raised $6,000 to start a fund to build it, and that alumni took care of the remainder of more than $100,000.
"Having an arena on campus at that time in history was still relatively rare," said men's hockey coach Terry Meagher in the piece. "There were good seating angles, the right noise and intimacy. All the stars lined up and it became a legendary building."
The article includes a timeline that looks back at Dayton Arena through the years, beginning with its debut game on December 5, 1956.
Final Games in Dayton
The last men's game in Dayton Arena (against Middlebury) will be held Friday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m.
The last women's game (against Wesleyan) will be played Saturday, Jan. 17, at 6:30 p.m.
First Games in Watson
The first games in Sidney J. Watson Arena will be played Sunday, Jan. 18.
The women's game (against Hamilton) takes place at 2 p.m.; the men's game (against Williams) is at 5 p.m., following a dedication ceremony at 4 p.m.