The purpose of the Brantford and Area Sports Hall of Recognition (Sports Hall) is to recognize those local athletes who have achieved the highest standards of excellence in their chosen sport. It also recognizes those in supporting roles whose contributions have been exemplary and significant.
On Friday June 29, 1984 the original Brantford and Area Sports Hall of Recognition was opened with an official ribbon cutting ceremony by Wayne Gretzky.
For several years the Sports Hall had temporary exhibits set up in the cafeteria at the Wayne Gretzky Sports Centre. These exhibits proved to be a very popular attraction for visiting sports enthusiasts and with the increasing traffic it was decided that a committee would work towards establishing permanent exhibits for the Sports Hall.
In 1990, the Brantford Bisons Alumni Association spearheaded a fundraising campaign to build a permanent home for the Sports Hall. After running a successful campaign raising over $100,000, the Brantford Bisons Alumni dedicated at permanent expanded space. The Sports Hall opened on May 16, 1991 and quickly became a centerpiece for visitors.
In 1993, the Sports Hall Executive Committee established an Honour Roll to recognize the accomplishments of local Individuals, Organizations and Teams whose contributions had been exemplary and significant for their sport. Since 1993, 40 Builders and 31 Teams have been recognized on the Honour Roll.
In 2013, the Sports Hall Executive Committee, along with City staff, Brantford City Council and other volunteers put together a fundraising effort to build new interactive exhibits and a variety of sports display cases. Over $800,000 was raised to achieve this goal!
In 2014, the Sports Hall celebrated its 30th Anniversary and since its inception in 1984, the Sports Hall has Inducted 87 Athletes, 5 Builders, 40 Individuals and 31 Teams.
On November 22, 2014 the Sports Hall celebrated the newly expanded and upgraded space with a Grand Opening Ceremony. Inductees, Honour Roll members, dignitaries, sponsors, members of the public and City staff were part of the celebrations. The Sports Hall consisted of new interactive Inductee Touchscreens Wall of Recognition, Individual Sports Displays, Trivia Game, Broadcast Booth, Mini Theatre and Special Tribute area for Wayne Gretzky and his family.