ALLAN — The hometown of the team captain of the 2017-18 Humboldt Broncos will remember him by renaming the rink where he learned to play hockey.
Allan’s skating rink was renamed the Logan Schatz Memorial Arena at a ceremony March 16, during the town’s winter festival. Logan had died in the April 6, 2018 collision between the Humboldt Broncos’ team bus and a semi-truck.
“We are so honoured, as we know Logan would have been,” said Bonnie Schatz, his mother.
Kelly Schatz, his father, said the arena’s new name ensures people will remember Logan into the future.
“You often wonder if he's going to stay remembered as time goes on,” he said. “Now you can know he will be somewhat. It's there forever.”
Logan had been skating in the arena since he was three years old.
“When he was little, I was actually the caretaker of the rink, so I had keys,” Kelly said. “Even if it wasn’t open, I'd be able to get him in here and he’d skate. He spent hours out there. You had to drag him off the ice.”
Even when Logan was young, it was clear to Kelly his son was a natural skater.
“I just knew he was going to be a good skater just watching him when he first started,” he said. “If you're a real good skater, you can usually play a pretty good level of hockey.”
Kelly said his favourite moments in the arena was when he and a friend would coach the hockey teams Logan was on and come if with strategies to get that extra goal needed to win. Logan would often be a key part of those strategies.
Logan was also known in the community as a natural leader
Even when he was younger he was probably the captain of every hockey team he was on and it wasn't me picking him – it was always the other coaches picking who's captain and they thought he'd be the best one,” Kelly said. “When Humboldt made him captain, he was only 18. That's pretty rare in the SJHL [Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League], so they obviously saw something in him.”
Les Alm, Allan’s mayor, was part of a community-wide effort to rename the arena.
“Last fall I came to the Allan and District Communiplex board and said I would like the skating rink renamed in Logan’s name,” he said. “There were in 100 per cent support.”
Town council voted to go ahead with the name change last fall.
“This is all about Logan's legacy and people, whenever they come into this rink, they'll be coming into the Logan Schatz Memorial Arena,” he said. “This way, the next generation and future generations will know about Logan and and remember.”
The new signs that name the area have a Humboldt connection. They were made by Brian Hinz, a teacher at Humboldt Collegiate Institute. Alm said he contacted Hinz to create the signs.
“I'd seen his work and he does incredible work,” he said.
There’s one sign at the door to the arena, and another inside. The indoor sign has two sticks that Logan used.
“He requested two of Logan’s sticks for the sign,” Bonnie said. “I was reluctant to hand over any of Logan’s sticks, but now that I’ve seen the sign, it’s beautiful and I like it.”