CFHoF to move to THF


by TICATS STAFF| JUNE 30, 2015

Under a plan presented to the Hamilton City Council by the Canadian Football League, City of Hamilton staff and the Hall of Fame’s governing committee, The Canadian Football Hall of Fame could be relocating to Tim Hortons Field in 2016.

“We’re thrilled to collaborate with the CFL Office, City of Hamilton staff, and the Hall of Fame’s governing committee to create a vision for the future of the Hall. This will bring it directly to Tiger-Cats fans, as well as to football fans across the region and country,? said Scott Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer of the Ticats. “This is another component of our on-going commitment to delivering the best live viewing experience to our fans at any sports venue in North America. For our current fans, and generations of fans to come, the ability to combine our live game experience with the incredible history of over 100 years of our great league and its players is incredibly exciting.?

The plan for the relocation of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame to Tim Hortons Field includes making Hamilton and Tim Hortons Field its permanent home. It will also bring back the marquee Hall of Fame game to Hamilton for the next 5 years, starting in 2016. One key feature of the plan will see the Hall’s centrepiece artifacts, the Hall of Fame busts of its members, featured in a state of the art “studio? on the grounds of Tim Hortons Field. In addition, historic trophies, photos, plaques and artifacts from the Hall’s collection would also be strategically placed in fan accessible locations around the stadium.

“The history of football in Hamilton is unsurpassed in Canada, and our organization has the distinction of being able to showcase an iconic history while also moving into the future in bold and innovative ways,? Mitchell added. “By displaying these artifacts at the stadium we call home, we will further enrich the game day experience for our fans.?

Fantastic news. Something like this is long overdue as the HoF get little to no attention or foot traffic in its current location. In this new set up the HoF will get attention from thousands of fans attending games.

However, I do wonder if there is enough room at THF to store and display all the HoF displays? But I guess they have that figured it all out by this point in the process.

Cats have been making a lot of smart off the field moves to grow the brand: the radio station and now this.

I think this is wonderful news. The Hall of Fame will fit right in to the home stadium of
our legendary football team, both in the past and in future years.
The Hall will be an added incentive for fans to purchase game and season tickets.
In time, the new stadium will have to be considerably enlarged. If the gate receipts
are there, this should be feasible. :thup:

I too am extremely happy about this development. In it's current location (hidden beside city hall) it isn't accessible by all football fans as they tend to go to THF to attend Cat games instead of to the tiny facility at city hall plaza. I was there once and was so unimpressed I never returned, even though I am passionate about my love for Canadian Football. This is a win/win situation and I would like to thank Bob Young and the other governors of the league who are making this happen.

One word of advise: please do not turn it into the CFL hall of fame. It is about everything Canadian football-wise not just limited to the CFL.

:rockin: :rockin: :rockin:

Great News :thup:

Like the Ticats turning a profit this year for the first time in 40 years, I wonder if this new location @ THF can make the CFLHOF a cash cow for the CFL.........?

Can't wait to see it when it's built! :rockin:

I like the idea of the hall being linked with THF, but I will reserve judgement on the current plan. From what I've read thus far, the plan seems more like a series of displays around the stadium with an area behind the north party zone under the scoreboard for the busts. Other artifacts will be leant out across the country for mobile displays.

This does not sound like a hall of fame, but more like an art show set up at a mall.

To give the history and inductees of Canadian football the respect deserved a proper facility needs to be built or found to house all the items indoors where they can be displayed properly.

The concourses at THF are tight enough on game days without people stopping to try and look at a display while people are trying to get by to go to the washroom.

If there was a plan to move the hall to THF during construction, it should have been incorporated into the design as was suggested numerous times in various forms, not an afterthought like drinking fountains.

I want the hall in Hamilton, but do it right not a make shift display.

City staff are recommending moving the Canadian Football Hall of Fame from 58 Jackson St. W. to Tim Hortons Field.

Hamilton Spectator
ByDaniel Nolan

The Canadian Football Hall of Fame in downtown Hamilton appears to be on the move.

The city and the Canadian Football League are in agreement to move the storied hall from its location on Jackson Street West, just east of City Hall, to the new Tim Hortons Field on Melrose Avenue North.

The hall is proposed to wind up operations at the end of July for its new home at the stadium. The city is offering to contribute $250,000 to the cost of the new structure and development of such items as displays on legendary CFL players and builders and a media hall of fame.

The idea has the backing of the board of directors of the hall, which has been located in Hamilton since 1963. An agreement was reached between the city and the hall of fame in 1968. It is set to expire in 2018.

"As a board, we are very positive that your proposal for a new agreement between the City of Hamilton and the CFL is a move in the right direction for the CFHOF," Dave Marler, chair of the board of directors, says in a June 18 letter to city manager Chris Murray and CFL president Michael Copeland.

"I am pleased to announce that the Board of Directors fully supports and endorses this new agreement and plan," Marler continued.

A report on the relocation is going to city councillors Monday. [/b]

While a little more subdued than I imagined, this is the perfect plan. Let's face the music, the current hall is pathetic now because there is and never will be a business case for a dedicated Canadian Football Hall of Fame. This will reduce costs to virtually zero while more people will visit the hall in a subdued form during one game than would visit the hall in an entire year. This is giving the inductees more respect than they get now, certainly.

I'd imagine there'll also be some storage space for all the extra memorabilia the hall owns. Would be great to also have a room for a changing exhibit with a new theme each game day. Doesn't look like that's in the plans though.

And as I say that, far more details from

If adopted by Council, it would:

• Formally recognize the City of Hamilton as the Canadian Football Hall of Fame’s permanent foundation and home.
• Ensure the CFL’s annual Hall of Fame game takes place in Hamilton through at least 2020.
• Feature the centerpiece of the Hall of Fame, the member busts of the inductees to a modern new fan accessible “studio? at Tim Horton’s Field, the home of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, for the 2016 season and beyond.
• Create a signature Hall of Fame display to honour the members of the media wing of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, with photos, plaques and artifacts, in the press box at Tim Horton’s Field.
• Recognize the City of Hamilton’s significant and historic contributions to Canadian football and the Canadian Football Hall of Fame with a plaque at Tim Horton’s Field.
• Make hundreds of additional Canadian football artifacts, currently stored by the Hall, available for travelling exhibitions across the country, so they can be enjoyed by Canadian football fans everywhere.
• Assign the responsibility for future operation of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame to the CFL, including member selection, expenses and capital expenditures.
• Return the Jackson Street building that currently hosts the Canadian Football Hall of Fame to the City of Hamilton by January, 2016.
• Reserve the special climate controlled basement of the Jackson Street building, designed for the preservation of artifacts to museum standards, for Canadian Football Hall of Fame storage until 2025.

So basically, this recognizes that nobody ever visits the hall, so lets give up and show the busts at THF, keep the storage space in the basement and let somebody else use the upstairs of the building. Stuff in storage is available for exhibitions.

The biggest news may be that the CFL itself will control member selection, which I suspect will mean you can forget about recognizing people from the CIS and other leagues.

I'm afraid that I agree. This is the dismantling of the HoF and creating some displays. True curatorial work and archival research will be gone. Sad. I think that I understand why it's happening but let's admit that the HoF idea has died for now. As someone who donated some materials to the Hall, this comes a little closer to me than it might to others.

I wonder if Catmann - who used to post frequently on these boards up to about 5 years ago and who worked at the Hall - is still around under another name. You there buddy? What d'ja think about this?

Mark, I wouldn't be so quick to condemn the curatorial and research duties of the Museum yet, as we don't yet have all the details. Let's face it, the building is a shambles and is virtually invisible to the public at large. I would assume (with all the precautions of ASS-U-ME-ing), that with this move, and the CFHoF and M coming under the aegis of the League, there will be vastly increased funding for such activities. If I am correct, it is the mandate of the CFHoF and M to include ALL CANADIAN football, CIS, Amateur, Semi-Pro, High-School, Officials, etc. I don't think we have anything to fear about losing this mandate any time soon.

I would like to see the Canadian Football Hall of Fame remain as an attraction for tourists in general from far and wide.

Tourists and visitors come to town when there are no CFL football games scheduled, the other 350+ days of the year

The majority of tourists stay in downtown hotels. IMO, Keep it downtown somewhere if not at it's present location

If the Hall goes to Tim Hortons field, There is nothing else nearby to make it worthwhile for tourist to visit.

If all the organisations who want the Canadian Football Hall of Fame to succeed got together they would be able to find an effective way to market the Hall so that it would become an economically viable tourist asset for the community

Ronfromtigertown, I think like most things in life in this day and age times have changed that it's really not financially viable anymore to have a seperate building in the same city housing the Hall of Fame.

I think the idea of moving the Hall of Fame to THF is a good one and with the changes in lifestyle that anyone can access the HOF through the internet or mobile apps from anywhere in Canada would also allow for more freedom and access.

The only other solution would be to move the HOF to a nuetral ground somewhere like in Ottawa and combine it with a Canadian Sports Hall of Fame that would have the possibility of attracting more visitors and CFL fans from across the country.


^^^ I agree. Ron, NOBODY goes to the current location as it stands, so this makes the best of a bad situation.

I'm not really a fan of the busts behind the patio, or the hall directly housed in the stadium. What I'd much rather see are occasional exhibits of the hall in the stadium, and the hall itself housed in a building nearby, like say the King George school.

Well at least "Fast Freddy" didn't want to move it to the West Harbour. :wink:

:lol: :lol: :lol: :rockin: :rockin: :rockin:

Some good points in the article, does it mean that access to the HOF will only be during Ticat home games?

Speaking of access, there are questions of just how accessible the Hall's memorabilia will be in a location like Tim Hortons Field when it's not a Tiger-Cats home game. Keep in mind that the team only plays nine regular-season home games a year, plus one preseason one and at most three playoff games (divisional semi-final, divisional final, Grey Cup). If the Hall display would only be viewable on Ticats' game days, that's at most 14 days every year.

Even that might still get the Hall’s busts in front of more fans. Radley wrote in 2014 that the CFHOF’s only seen a maximum of 1,600 visitors annually in the last five years (with just an average of 2.9 per day in 2013), and it’s quite possible to see that potentially topped in just a couple of game days, as Tim Hortons Field can hold 24,000 fans. Still, anything that can be done to make the Hall visitable in the offseason would be a good step. This is the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, not a Ticats’ enterprise, and it should be accessible to fans as much as possible year-round, not just on Hamilton game days.

Also on the access front, the release talks about putting a Hall of Fame display in the press box to feature members of the media wing. That’s a good idea, and it would have a lot of value for media members. Still, care should be taken to do this in a way that average fans can examine the media wing displays as well. Segregating off the media wing and preventing fans from viewing it would diminish the value of that honour, and cover up some of the most interesting parts of the CFL’s history.

A final, but vital, potential change to consider here is what could happen to the selection process. The release notes that this plan would “assign the responsibility for future operation of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame to the CFL, including member selection.” Perhaps that doesn’t need to sound ominous; it’s quite possible that the league could decide that the current excellent selection committee and process still serves its purposes. However, if the CFL decides that it wants to make significant changes to that committee and/or process, that might be more problematic, especially if the league tries to push out media members. The Hall of Fame only keeps its status as an incredible honour if the induction process is credible and rigorous, and some independence from the league offices is necessary for that.

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I think the Canadian Hall of Fame should be downtown where it convenient for tourists who are staying in hotels and looking for places within walking distance to visit and buy souvenirs. If the present H of F building is on the way out. how about an exhibit in Jackson Square on the main floor with directions to the Hall of Fame itself at some low cost rental space nearby on James or King within walking distance or the former Eatons Centre with it's high vacancy rate.

P.S. How about promoting the Hall of Fame by getting some of their archived stuff that has never even been seen before in front of 100s of thousands of eyeballs a year into exhibits at Eastgate Square and Limeridge Mall

It is not like the current location is in the middle of nowhere - which is the impression one unfamiliar with Hamilton would get reading some of the comments here. It is right downtown, within a five minute walk of downtown hotels, the First Ontario Centre, Jackson Square, the bus terminal, the Art Gallery, the convention centre. It is right across the street from Hamilton Place - right next to City Hall with the big statue and signage to the place clearly visible from Main Street.

It would be like somebody saying a location next to Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto is a bad location.

The main problem isn't the location, it is the TOTAL failure of the Hall to be marketed properly over the last 20 years.

I agree with you that marketing has been one issue, but the other is how disappointing it is as a venue. As I said previously in this thread, I have been to the Hall once since 1968 and have not returned because there really isn't much to see there.