Inductee

Gary Vasey

In the 1940’s, young Minden hockey players like Gary Vasey skated on outdoor rinks. It was a shock when his “Little NHL Haliburton County League” team journeyed to Haliburton to play in the indoor arena. Gary and his twin brother Glen led the league to several championships. In 1950, fifteen-year-old Gary played for the Minden Monarchs and helped them win the Ontario Rural Hockey Association “C” Championships. From there, he went on to play Junior hockey in Lindsay, and then played for the Scarborough Rangers while he attended Teachers College. 

When he returned to Minden to teach, he was welcomed back on the Minden Monarchs team, who won three straight Eastern Ontario Championships between 1956 and 1958. Gary was lead scorer all three years. Minden’s Memorial Centre was packed every Saturday night with cheering fans. During the Ontario “playdowns” there were close to a thousand people inside the “old barn”. Community pride was at its peak. Gary Vasey was a pivotal figure during Minden’s golden age of hockey, inspiring a generation of young players to pursue their dreams.

Gary’s skills caught the attention of Bradford’s Intermediate B team, and he proved himself right away scoring 34 goals and 36 assists in the first 25 games. They won a number of Ontario Senior Championships in the 1960’s. 

In 1971, Gary secured an Ontario Junior D franchise for Bradford. As owner, general manager and coach, he called the team the Bradford Vasey Juniors. They became perennial league champions, and won the Ontario Junior C Championship in 1972-73.

Wherever he went, Gary promoted Haliburton County. Later in life, as an owner of a thoroughbred horse racing stable with Don Finn, his heart continued to stay in the Highlands. Some of his stakes-winning horses had names like Maple Lake, Kennisis, Minden Monarch, Kashagawigamog, and Minden.

When the new campus for the Fleming College Haliburton School of Art and Design was built in 2003 one of the classrooms was named and dedicated for the Vasey Family in honour of Gary’s contributions to the college. A sculpture of a running horse by William Lishman was donated to the Haliburton Sculpture Forest in honour of Gary.  Situated in front of the Fleming College campus, it is called Kennisis, Horse and Rider- a tribute to Gary and his contributions in the community. 

Donate

We welcome your donations!

The Haliburton Highlands Sports Hall of Fame is made possible through the generous contributions of donors and sponsors.

To make a donation please send a cheque made out to: Municipality of Dysart et al. Put “Sports Hall of Fame donation” on the memo line of the cheque.

The Municipality will issue a charitable tax receipt for donations over $50.00.

Mail your cheque to:
Haliburton Highlands Sports Hall of Fame
P.O. Box 1038
Haliburton, ON K0M 1S0

If your business would like to be a Sports Hall of Fame sponsor, please contact us at [email protected].