Kristi works in the skate shop once a week now for fun, but she basically grew up at the Arena - first taking lessons, then as part of the figure skating club and then teaching kids how to skate. She invited us to pop by and have a chat. 

When I asked her if there were any ghosts in the building she said:

"Mostly at night, when there is less people around, I've often out of the corner of my eye seen someone walking down to the men's washroom and when I turned to get a better look at them - there is nobody there! It's just a feeling that all of sudden there is somebody here and yet there is no one physically around.  I just wave or say hi and then keep going with what I am doing. I like it, it is one of the fun things that this old place has, it has lots of character!"

Here are more things that Kristi shared:

Red Robinson so kindly sat down with us to talk about his first hand experience with the concerts at the Kerrisdale Arena...

"In essence Bill Haley and the Comets in June 1956 was the first Rock and Roll show EVER in Vancouver!"

Thanks to Phil Mackesy for all his archival photo help!

A Vancouver journalist and historian emailed us about his own research in regards to the history of the Kerrisdale Arena. He met with us and shared what he learned and his own personal connection to the place...

"I grew up about four blocks away from the Arena and spent the first 25 years of my life in Kerrisdale, attending Quilchena Elementary and later Point Grey Highschool - so the rink was always a bit of a fixture in my days growing up there.
I remember very well how crazy it was when those concerts happened. There was real pandemonium some nights. And In so far as the concert history of Vancouver goes, those events were really unique. Beyond the fact that The Clash came to Kerrisdale (which alone is rather remarkable), but a number of people who worked putting on those shows went on to be very large players within the international concert industry. It’s quite something."

Alan has seen many bands in Vancouver over the years, and he is a huge fan of The Clash - he so kindly talked to us about The Clash concert he attended at Kerrisdale Arena in 1982:

" I don't remember the set list, I remember they had camouflaged netting all over the stage because it was the COMBAT ROCK tour...."

Tom and Deb met us at the Kerrisdale Senior Centre and told us about their Grandfather, Nick Lucas, who was  involved with getting the Kerrisdale Arena built. Nick was an entrepreneur and very interested in building community.

Tom mentioned in an email: 
There used to be two bronze plaques in both the Arena and the Kerrisdale Community Centre, commemorating the work that Nick and the Kiwanis Club had done to get this project underway. 

Deb shared this fond memory:

“I can remember driving with Grandad in his cadillac, he always had a cadillac, we all took turns, there are 5 boys and myself in our family, and leaving his house at 33rd Avenue and Marguerite Street, Grandad would know how to shift gears and ride the brakes so we could drive all through downtown and all the way to the north shore without stopping at one traffic light!”

We talked to Sylvia over the phone about an event that lasted over 40 years at the Kerrisdale Arena...

"It was really about community, it was completely volunteer run and in fact it gave me the inspiration for my volunteerism that continues to be an important part of my life!"

Maureen brought the Kerrisdale Figure Skating Club scrapbooks to the Arena one afternoon...

"I started skating here in 1950, in fact I used my babysitting money, 25 cents an hour, to pay for my Kerrisdale Figure Skating Club membership! 
I've been in some of the Carnivals but I wasn't a competitive skater. I didn't have the money for 'patch' (when you practiced your figures) but if you were a member of the club and the community centre you could skate in the mornings for free! So I would haul across on the bus with my skates and books and do 'patch' for free and then go to school!

They used to put a rope up at the end of the rink and Dr Helmut May would be teaching figure skating and the other part of the rink was used for the public and I would watch and listen and copy and he noticed this and then got a group of us together and taught us together once a month! I really liked the figures. I eventually went into adult dance sessions and even won a 'senior dance' trophy with my partner Gordon Fox in 1963."

Top left Maureen and Gord in 1963

"I'm now one the board of the KFSC."

Here are a few more of Maureen's memories....