Calgary Sports 101: Everything You Need to Know About Sports Teams in Calgary
Does the thrill of the game keep you on the edge of your seat? Do you enjoy rooting for a local team, urging them towards the championships? Are you getting inspired to improve your own skills? Calgary is the place to do it all!
The city of Calgary is a place where sports of all kinds are abundant. Not only has our city been honored to host the Winter Olympics in 1988, we have also been the city to host multiple Grey Cup finals, the Special Olympics, Stanley Cup finals, and may even be hosting the upcoming Winter X Games! Calgary is known for many of our professional and amateur local sports teams whom have succeeded greatly in their sport, and we are proud to support them all!
If you are new to Calgary or are looking for more information regarding the city's teams, sports facilities, and public arenas and fields, look no further. Here is your 101 guide to Calgary sports!
Professional Calgary Sports Teams
There is something to be said about cheering for a home team in your city. Our very own Calgary Flames have such a loyal following that bars across the city fill up on game nights. Our "C of Red" fans have been acknowledged as some of the most passionate and loyal supporters in the league. Of course, hockey is only one of the sports that Calgary has to applaud for. Here are the top professional teams that reside in Calgary and why they are worth cheering for:
The Calgary Flames are one of Calgary's most celebrated and watched teams in the city. This local hockey team was founded in 1972, and 16 years later the team celebrated their first championship in 1988, winning the Stanley Cup. Although the team has not (YET) won another Stanley cup since that momentous occasion, the team has come very close on multiple occasions. The Calgary Flames play their home games at the Scotiabank Saddledome and will begin playing preseason games this September.
Winners of the Grey Cup in 2018, the Calgary Stampeders are a force to be reckoned with in the Canadian Football League. This professional football team was founded in 1945 and has won the grey cup a total of 8 times. What makes this team memorable is their live horse mascot, Quick Six, who charges across the length of the stadium with every touchdown. The team plays their home games at the McMahon Stadium in Calgary and will be working towards bringing home the Grey Cup once again for the 2019 season.
Primarily playing at the Scotiabank Saddledome, the Calgary Roughnecks are Calgary's professional lacrosse team. As members of the Western Division of the National Lacrosse League, the team has been thriving since they were founded in 2001. The team has won three division champions in 2005, 2009, and 2011. These thrilling lacrosse games have become a regular attraction for Calgarians, and with the energy provided by the mascot, Howie the honey badger, the excitement of the game is always contagious.
The Cavalry Football Club is one of the Canadian professional soccer clubs based in Calgary. The team has not been around very long since being founded early in May 2018, but that has not stopped them from winning the 2019 Canadian Premier League Spring season. The team plays their home games at the ATCO Field located on the Spruce Meadows grounds, and will be playing games in Calgary this September and October.
Major Sports Facilities in Calgary
When it comes time to watch a game, there are various facilities and sports arenas known to Calgary that host both professional games and amateur games. Of these recognizable facilities, the following major sports locations include:
Owned by the University of Calgary, the McMahon Stadium is the primary football facility that is home to the Calgary Stampeders, the Calgary Colts, and the University of Calgary Dinos. This facility is located in the northwest of the city along Crowchild Trail and, in 1960, was built in a short 103 days. Over the years the stadium has received improvements including the sound system, seating, and turf, which have made this location a popular one to attend.
The Scotiabank Saddledome is a multi-use indoor facility with the ability to seat over 19,000 visitors. In the centre of the Scotiabank Saddledome is the main area, which can be transformed into a rink, a field, and even a mainstage for concerts and other large performances. The teams involved with the Scotiabank Saddledome are the Calgary Flames, Calgary Hitmen, Calgary Roughnecks, and the Calgary Stampeders.
WinSport's Canada Olympic Park
WinSport Canada Olympic Park is a place where skiing, snowboarding, hockey, skating, bobsleighing, mountain biking, and luging all take place. This renowned facility is where history has been made, with appearances from Eddie the Eagle and the Jamaican bobsleigh team. At WinSport you will find gorgeous arenas and facility features that offer a place for the general public and high-performance professionals to practice, train, and perform.
Complete with beautifully maintained grounds and stunning historical buildings, Spruce Meadows is the home of world-class show jumping in Calgary. This facility is where the "Masters Tournament" is held as well as a wide variety of unique show jumping tournaments for riders of all levels. Aside from the show-jumping, Spruce Meadows is known to host various markets and events throughout the year that are a spectacle to behold.
Max Bell Centre
The Max Bell Centre is one of Calgary's large hockey arenas that promises the best viewing areas. The facility, found in the southeast of Calgary, is said to hold a capacity of roughly 3,000 people and has been the venue to host hockey games, sporting events, as well as local tradeshows, meetings and other events. The facility has two artificial ice surfaces and is the primary place where the Calgary Canucks play and is home to Hockey Calgary.
Located on the Stampede Grounds in downtown Calgary, the Stampede Corral is a multi-purpose venue that has been used for hockey as well as tennis, but primarily, the Stampede Corral is used during the Calgary Stampede. It is during this exciting annual event that the facility is used to host rodeos and other Stampede features to entertain locals and visitors. The facility can host more than 7,000 people and has been in full-use since its opening in 1950.
Amateur Calgary Sports Teams
If you are looking for further opportunities to engage with sports in the local area, there are plenty of amateur Calgary sports teams that are playing games throughout the year.
- Calgary Hitmen (Hockey)
- Calgary Colts (Junior Football)
- Calgary Canucks (Junior Football)
- Calgary Speed Skating Association (Speed Skating)
- Calgary Foothills FC (Soccer)
- Calgary Rage (Women's Football)
- Calgary Rowing Club (Rowing)
- Calgary Kangaroos (Australian Football)
- Prairie Wolf Pack (Rugby)
Public Sport Centres and Arenas in Calgary
For those involved in sports themselves, there are hundreds of sports centers, arenas, pools, and golf courses around the city that offer public access. Of these facilities, Calgary has 12 arenas, 19 indoor rinks, 13 athletic parks, a soccer centre, 8 golf courses, skate parks, pools, and so much more! A few of the popular public Calgary sports centers and arenas include:
- Vivo Recreation Centre — NW Calgary
- Thornhill Aquatic and Recreation Centre — NW Calgary
- Murray Copot Arena — NW Calgary
- Foothills Athletic Park — NW Calgary
- Shouldice Arena — NW Calgary
- Olympic Oval — NW Calgary
- Stew Hendry and Henry Viney Arenas — NE Calgary
- Renfrew Athletic Park — NE Calgary
- The Genesis Centre — NE Calgary
- Renfrew Aquatic and Recreation Centre — NE Calgary
- Village Square Arena — NE Calgary
- Glenmore Reservoir — SW Calgary
- Beltline Aquatic and Fitness Centre — SW Calgary
- Canyon Meadows Aquatic and Fitness Centre — SW Calgary
- Stu Peppard Arena — SW Calgary
- Woodbine Athletic Park — SW Calgary
- Acadia Athletic Park — SE Calgary
- Calgary Rugby Union — SE Calgary
- Inglewood Aquatic Centre — SE Calgary
- Max Bell Centre — SE Calgary
- And more!
For a complete list of the recreational facilities and sports centers in Calgary, visit the City of Calgary website.
Get your fill of Calgary sports by attending professional games at the various high-end sports facilities in the city, enjoying the competition of the amateur local teams, or get physical and participating in sports and activities on your own! Whether you like to swim, jump, run, skate, or kick, there is a place for you in Calgary!