Argos announce plans to celebrate 150th anniversary during 2023 season

TORONTO — The Toronto Argonauts will celebrate the franchise’s 150th Anniversary during the 2023 season and have planned a season full of tributes, both on the field and off, for fans and alumni culminating with a public event on Wednesday, October 4 to mark the historic occasion and an anniversary celebration game on Friday, October 6.

At a press conference Friday at the Argonaut Rowing Club, the original founders of the team, the Argos introduced a 150th Anniversary logo that the team will feature all season, including on its uniform, as well as plans to count down the top 150 moments in Argos history throughout the season.

The team will celebrate the 150th Anniversary, and its place as the oldest professional sports team in North America still using its original name, at each game beginning with the home opener on June 18th against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats as they raise a banner for the team’s record 18th Grey Cup Championship, won last November with a dramatic 24-23 victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. That night, the first 10,000 fans entering BMO Field will also receive a replica Grey Cup Championship ring, modeled after the team’s stunning championship ring.

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“The Argonauts have an incredible history here in the City of Toronto, dating back 150 years, and this season is a great opportunity to celebrate this special Anniversary with many of the people who helped create so many important Argos memories, both alumni and fans alike,” said Bill Manning, President of the Toronto Argonauts. “We look forward to reliving those moments that helped make this franchise so memorable, and to kicking off this anniversary season as defending Grey Cup champions.”

On Monday, July 3, as the Argos host the BC Lions in their second home game, the team will celebrate the induction of two alumni as the newest All-Time Argos, bringing the total to 26 legendary players, as announced by Toronto Argonauts Alumni Association President Stace Coray, Vice President Dan Ferrone and Secretary Bob Bronk. Joining the prestigious list of All-Time Argos in 2023 will be Damon Allen (Quarterback, 2003-2007) and Derrell ‘Mookie’ Mitchell (Receiver, 1997-2003, 2007).

“The Toronto Argonauts Alumni Association are proud to work with the team to announce the addition of Damon Allen and Derrell Mitchell to the All-Time Argos list at such a historic time for the club,” said Toronto Argonauts Alumni Association President Stace Coray. “Both players had legendary careers as Argos and contributed greatly to the club’s rich history, both on the field and in the community. We look forward to officially celebrating their addition to the All-Time Argos list in July.”

As part of the team’s celebration of its 150th anniversary, and its ongoing commitment to the community, MLSE Foundation has committed $150,000 in donations to community programs on behalf of the Argos this year with $75,000 earmarked for the Daily Break Food Bank and another $75,000 commitment to football development with a partnership to be announced this season. An additional $75,000 will be committed to community football development in 2024.

Throughout the season, the Argos will count down the Top 150 Moments in franchise history, as determined by a 150th Anniversary Historical Sub-Committee made up of long-time club employees Mike Hogan and Danny Webb, former in-stadium announcer Don Landry and Canadian Football historians James Fraser and Paul Woods. The Top 150 Moments in franchise history will be counted down throughout the season with the Top 10 being unveiled during the 150th Anniversary week in October.

Officially founded on October 4, 1873, the Toronto Argonauts are the winningest club in Canadian Football history with a record 18 Grey Cup Championships to their credit. The team was founded by the Argonaut Rowing Club as a means to keep rowing club members in shape during the off-season.

Throughout its history, many of the greatest players in Canadian Football history have worn the iconic Double Blue uniform including legends Lionel Conacher, Joe Krol, Dick Shatto, Condredge Holloway, Doug Flutie, Ricky Ray and current Argos General Manager, Michael “Pinball” Clemons.

“This season will be a special reminder to us all that this Toronto Argonauts Anniversary is not just about football history, it also represents the history of this city and our country,” said Michael “Pinball” Clemons, General Manager of the Toronto Argonauts. “This franchise changed my life, and I know from speaking to so many other players and fans over the years that it has changed the lives of thousands of other people for the better in similar ways. We look forward to celebrating that impact and the fact that this team has brought us together for so many years.”

Further details on the Toronto Argonauts 150th Anniversary celebrations this season, including an Anniversary event on Wednesday, October 4, will be shared throughout the season.

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