Like many other families, the Hagels from Estevan bought Rider season tickets years ago to spend some quality time together.
Twenty-seven-year-old Ryan Hagel said he still vaguely remembers his first time walking into the old stadium with his dad, Ron. It was back in 1990 when the Saskatchewan Roughriders were hosting the Calgary Stampeders.
“I just remember the flashy colours, cheering for the red guys and getting told not to, just because red was my favourite colour,” said Ryan, adding that it was that day he became a Riders fan.
While his younger brother Nicholas doesn’t remember his three-year-old self entering the stadium for the first time, there is a more recent game they all remember: the 2007 Labour Day Classic.
“We were losing down in the final stretch and we had (Kerry) Joseph run 25 yards to score the touchdown to win the game — greatest memory ever,” said Nicholas.
Ron agreed, saying that the stadium reached almost Grey Cup-level excitement that day.
“That game in particular — to come from behind, to pull it off with seconds left — was just awesome,” said Ron, adding that the best part was sharing that moment with his two boys.
Now that demolition is underway at the old Mosaic Stadium, Nicholas said he’s horrified.
“Tearing down Taylor Field is an atrocity. We’re destroying Saskatchewan culture right there — the place should be a historical landmark,” said Nicholas.
Despite the strong feelings of some fans, the iconic venue has already started coming down piece by piece.
Machinery is expected to claw through the structure by December and the foundation deconstruction should last until April.
The demolition will cost approximately $2 million.