Pullar Ice Arena Project

The Pullar Community Building is 75 years old in 2014 and our community would like to celebrate this anniversary by completing major renovations that will keep this historic landmark a critical part of this community for years to come. 


If any additional information is needed, please let us know. We can be reached at City Hall, Dan Wyers (Assistant Public Works Director/Parks) 225 East Portage Street Sault Ste Marie, MI 49783. Telephone 906-632-5768 or e-mail dwyers@sault.com

Project Plans

Current renovation plans, estimate cost of 1.5 million, as outlined in the Pullar Master Plan and as a priority of the Sault Ste. Marie City Commission 2013-2014 Adopted Goals include:

  • Demolition of the existing locker rooms, referee rooms, public restrooms, and team facilities along with renovations of the existing locker rooms and referee rooms, public restrooms and team facilities for an estimated project cost of $240,000. The City of Sault Ste. Marie recently received money from the estate of Mrs. Cecilia Matheson, a local resident who had a great fondness for the Pullar. This funding in the amount of $254,311 will go towards this part of the Project. 
  • Renovations of the west side of the building and construction of an addition to house the Zamboni ice resurfacer, additional storage, and modern locker room for an estimated project cost of $560,000.
  • Roof board ceiling replacements, structural steel repainting and vinyl liner panels over the ceiling in the main structure for an estimated project cost of $136,000.
  • An addition of a raised roof with new structure in the back of the facility to eliminate a leaking lower rood and provide for additional room/space on a second floor for an estimated project cost of $174,000
  • New hockey safety glass with aluminum supports for the arena for an estimated project cost of $65,000.
  • Engineering and Contingency (25%) for an estimated project cost of $300,000.

History of the Pullar Ice Arena

The Pullar Community Building (Pullar) was built in 1939 at a cost of $181,000; and, at the time was “state of the art.” Making the project possible was a bequest of $70,000 in the will of (late) Sophia Nolte Pullar. Her funds were largely used to build the Pullar in 1939 as a city Public Works Administration project. The Pullar is one of the oldest artificial ice rinks still in operation in the United States. 

At one time, the Pullar was one of the few rinks in the world to have summer ice. For ten years (1948-1958) the Detroit Red Wings organization utilized the Pullar as their training headquarters. The Red Wings organization, at the time, had a west camp in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Canada and an east camp in Sault Ste. Marie, MI. General Manager Jack Adams, decided to combine the two camps and make Sault Ste. Marie the training site for ten years. During those ten years, the Detroit Red Wings dominated the Nation Hockey League with the great “production line” of Sid Abel, Ted Lindsay and Gordie Howe and goaltending from such greats as Harry Lumley, Glen Hall, and Terry Sawchuck. The defensive core group included “Red” Kelly, Jack Stewart, Leo Reise, and Marcel Pronovast just to mention a few. 

The Red Wing players were housed at two local hotels and many friendships between local fans and players were made which remain wonderful memories for some to this day. Sault Ste. Marie, MI is known as the “Original Hockey Town, USA.”

Currently, the Pullar is home to the Hiawatha Skating Club (since 1939), the Soo Eagle’s Jr. A Hockey Team of the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League (NOJHL), the Sault MI Hockey Association, and various other local adult leagues. The Pullar was home to Lake Superior State University’s (Division 1) and Sault Area High School’s hockey programs for many years. The University has utilized the ice surface on occasion for exhibition games. 

In recent years, the City of Sault Ste. Marie has completed a $200,000 exterior restoration project that included cleaning and restoring the exterior brick masonry, replaced entrance doors with glass and light panel, installation of an electronic L.E.D. sign/marquee and purchase of a new Zamboni ice resurfacer.

Pullar Community Building Naming Opportunities

The Pullar Community Building Renovation and Expansion Project is offering various levels of recognition opportunities with your participation in this very special project. Any and all support is highly appreciated regardless of your financial involvement. For more information on how to invest in the Pullar, please contact the City of Sault Ste. Marie at 906-632-5768. 

Possible Naming Opportunities Availability Potential Contribution
Rink 1 $500,000
Lobby 1 $250,000
Handicapped Seating Area, Platform Seats,
1 $250,000
Zamboni/Maintenance Room 1 $75,000
Large Dressing Room (Current Soo Eagles) 1 $15,000
Large Dressing Room (Current Sault High) 1 $15,000
Ticket Office 1 $10,000
Public Dressing Room 5 $10,000 Each
Female Dressing Room/Referee Room 1 $10,000
New Media Box 1 $5,000
Goal Judge Box (Area) 2 $5,000 Each
Penalty Box 2 $5,000 Each
Player Bench  2 $5,000 Each
New Historical Display Area 6 $1,000 Each
New Glass and Aluminum Support System 100 $500.00 Each

Donations of $100+ are recognized on a Donor Board
Donations of $5,000 – $10,000 receive naming rights for 25 years
Donations of $10,000 receive naming rights for 30 years
Donations box and envelopes available in the Pullar Lobby
Donations are non-refundable
Payment Plans are available in five(5) equal installments

Separate Project and Not fully Funded:

New Translucent Windows to Replicate Original Installed Windows

Possible Naming Opportunities Availability Potential Contribution
Large Windows 18 Available $7,500 Each
Small Windows 33 Available $2,500 Each
Estimated Total Cost:
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