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The Past

The Altona Maroons are a charter club in the South Eastern Manitoba Hockey League (SEMHL).  League play began in 1950-51 and the Maroons played out of the still standing – Sunflower Gardens in the heart of Altona.   The Altona Maroons played their first game in the cold wooden structure in February of 1951.

During the first season of play the Maroons were crowned the League Champions.  As the 50’s moved along, so did the Maroons.  Icing a strong squad every year, hockey became very popular and a part of Altona’s entertainment.  During the first decade of existence the Maroons won the League Championships a total of 4 times.

When the 60’s arrived, hockey was growing and even though the S.E.M.H.L had some old teams bow out and new ones arrive, the Maroons maintained their solid involvement in the league.   Throughout the 1960’s the club was able to finish first in the league several times and battling through long hard playoffs but were not privileged to win a championship.

In the 70’s, Altona was becoming a major center in Southern Manitoba and organized Minor Hockey became very popular.  High School Hockey was also started in the 1970’s with Altona’s W.C. Miller Aces playing in the Zone IV.  With Minor Hockey and High School hockey starting to take off and the development of the Red River Hockey League giving birth to the Altona Braves, hockey was in full swing in the Seventies.  Not only did the Maroons have talented players in the past, but now they were able to bring in more players that developed through a strong and growing system especially by having the Braves players to be called up when necessary.   The popularity of the Maroons and the new Braves continued to be strong and both clubs including the High School club attained their respective League Championships in 1974-1975 and the Maroons won again in 1979-1980 as well as winning the Provincial Senior Championships.

As the Maroons entered the 80’s the team maintained its strength and the club even traveled across the ocean to Europe for a tour, playing against pro teams in Eastern Europe, specifically in Czechoslovakia.

Again the Maroons won Championships in 1984-85 and 1987-88 both against the notorious and talent laden Warroad Lakers (Warroad, MN USA).

The Braves Hockey Club eventually came to end during the late 80’s and the 1990’s began with fewer local hockey players coming through local minor hockey systems.  With more and more younger players going to Post Secondary Education after High School and discontinuing to play hockey, teams throughout the S.E.M.H.L. were forced to bring in several import players each to keep the Senior teams in the league and other leagues throughout the province alive and healthy.

The Maroons celebrated a 40 year reunion in 1990-91and at the time management wondered if there would be a 50th reunion.  Between 1990 and year 2000 the Maroons iced a club every season and reached the league finals both in 1996-97 and 1997-98 unfortunately losing both series in exciting 7 game series.

As always the reason that has kept the Altona Maroons alive is the fantastic support received the community of Altona.   There is no telling what is in store for the future of the Maroons, but as long as there is a Senior team in Altona, there will be fans in the stands and support from the community and business community.

Written with permission from excerpts and based on stories from the Altona Maroons 40th Anniversary Book, printed 1991.

The Present

On behalf of the Altona Maroons executive, I would like to welcome you to the 54th consecutive season of hockey.  This is a milestone that is reached by few organizations and as a community we can be very proud.

Throughout the years the Maroons have achieved victory and grown throughout defeat.  In this time, they have proven themselves to be strong contenders for the S.E.M.H.L. Championship trophy and fine examples for our younger athletes moving up through the minor system.

The Altona Maroons boasts one of the strongest spectator bases in the S.E.M.H.L. For the players, it is energizing to play a home game for a full house.

In addition, continued and ongoing support from local business ensures the team’s presence for years to come.

Thank you to everyone who has made 54 years of hockey possible.

Bruce Braun, General Manager

 

The Future

There is no telling what is in store for the Maroons. Over the past 54 years the South Eastern Manitoba Hockey League has fielded anywhere from 3 – 10 teams and the Maroons have enjoyed wild success and suffered and grown through seasons of defeat.  One thing that has remained constant is the enjoyment players have received from playing in an arena where there are fans behind the team and a management that takes to caring for their players.   The Maroons are excited about 54 years of hockey in S.E.M.H.L and hope that it is an exciting season and that there are many more seasons to come!

Management of the Altona Maroons Hockey Club.

 

 

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