Why Toronto's Hockey Hall of Fame is a Must-See for Sports Fans

toronto hockey

If you're a sports fan, Toronto's Hockey Hall of Fame is pretty much the holy grail of sports halls of fame, a place not-be-missed, drawing over 300,000 visitors to downtown Toronto every year. While many tend to be out of the way like Cooperstown and Canton, this one is right in the heart of the city making it one of the most accessible too. Plus, it's open almost every day of the year, closing only on New Year's Day, Induction Monday (when the new Hall of Famers are inducted), and Christmas Day.

Of course, easy accessibility isn't the only reason to visit. 

The Toronto Hockey Hall of Fame is a bucket list destination for hockey fans, in fact, with so much for hockey lovers here, not to mention the city being home to the National Hockey League's Toronto Maple Leafs, you might want to consider making a move while you're here, touring some of the real estate in Toronto. But no matter what sport you're into, it's a fun place to spend an afternoon exploring. 

It Holds the World's Most Extensive Hockey Memorabilia and Gear Collection

The Toronto Hockey Hall of Fame holds the most extensive memorabilia and gear collection you'll find anywhere. Spread over 65,000 square feet with 15 exhibits, there's so much that only 45 percent is on display at any one time, the rest is rotated from storage. It includes the largest hockey book collection in the world and a long list of other items.

As it would be impossible to mention them all here, some highlights include a puck used in the first game that was ever recorded back in 1886. It's the oldest known to exist and can be found in the late 19th- and early 20th-century Kingston and Queen's University memorabilia collection, mounted on a trophy with a plaque. An original 1888 hockey stick can be found here too, which was used in one of the first annual hockey games in the province between Queen's and RMC.

You'll see hockey's oldest jersey which belonged to Guy Curtis, attributed to developing the sport in Canada and introducing it to the U.S. with his wool sweater is in classic barber pole style of red, gold, and blue colors, although the blue looks more like olive with so many decades having passed. Canada's first Olympic Gold Medal, won by Jack A. Cameron in 1924 is also here, along with Wayne Gretzky's rookie jersey, and so much more. 

You Can Take a Selfie with "Mr. Hockey"

You'll be greeted by a 9-foot-tall statue of Gordie Howe, AKA "Mr. Hockey" when you first walk in. It's the perfect place for a selfie. The entrance foyer also hosts rotating exhibits and four Honoured Member Columns.

Getting Interactive

Many visitors have the most fun taking part in interactive activities like the shooting game where you can shoot and save the pucks as you test your skills against top players virtually, such as Carey Price and Sidney Crosby.

The Broadcast Zone, meanwhile, offers a truly unique experience of watching a replay of an iconic hockey moment and adding your own play-by-play announcement. There are video game kiosks for playing the latest ice hockey video games and in Slapshot Trivia, you'll test your knowledge of the game in a database of 10,000 questions.

The Esso Great Hall

The heart of this institution is Esso Great Hall which features biographical sketches and portraits of the members who have been honored over the years along with significant NHL trophies, including the Stanley Cup.


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