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Wisconsin National Register of Historic Places

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Aerial view of stadium

Interior - arena

Lamella trusses

Eagle River Stadium
4149 Highway 70, Eagle River, Vilas County
Architect: Max Hanisch
Date of Construction: 1933

In order to promote winter tourism in Eagle River, the first high school hockey team was formed in 1926. Shortly thereafter, Charles E. Taylor, a leader of the Eagle River community and supporter of hockey, brought forth the concept to build a stadium that would provide entertainment and recreation for the town. His idea came to life in 1933 with the construction of the Eagle River Stadium. The sports arena brought a great sense of pride and unity to the town. Members of the community raised $25,000 to build the stadium on five acres of land donated by Taylor.

The stadium employed an innovative structural system resulting in its unique elongated dome-shaped roof. Its lamella truss roof consists of a network of wood rafters forming interlocking diamond shapes. This distinctive engineering method results in a geometrically stable form built relatively cheap with easily worked material. The lamella technique was used for its ability to span great widths, creating wide-open space for spectators. Its architect Max Hanisch was responsible for introducing the lamella truss to Wisconsin.

The location of the stadium and its surroundings were intended to be a winter sports center. The site also included a ski jump, a toboggan slide and a lake used for hockey before the indoor rink was in place. The Eagle River Stadium was the first indoor hockey arena in Wisconsin. In 1980 it was named the 'Hockey Capitol of Wisconsin' and in 1983 it became home of the Wisconsin Hockey Hall of Fame.

The stadium is still in use and continues to be the center of hockey in the state of Wisconsin. It is open to the public during regularly scheduled events.


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