Blessed with many ravines, wooded lots and parklands, early Toronto residents were able to enjoy many winter outdoor activies right in their own neighbourhoods. Sleighing, tobogganing, bobsledding, skating, curling, hockey, skiing and snowshoeing were all popular forms of winter recreation. As the city grew and prospered, clubs and associations formed, championships were organized and new facilities were built to meet the demand. Horse drawn sleighs were used to transport goods from farm to city stores in wintertime and wealthy businessmen had them in their stables. Toronto companies would occasionally decide to reward their employees by organizing group horse sleigh rides in High Park. Letter, 29 December 1883 Tobogganing became a popular sport in the late 19th century.
The National Game Long before hockey was played in Canada, the First Peoples of Canada played lacrosse. For them, lacrosse was both a religious ritual and a significant community activity. It prepared young men for war and, in some cases, a game of lacrosse between two tribes could resolve disputes or strengthen alliances. September 6, 1879, page 153 In the 19th century, lacrosse was adopted by the Europeans in Canada. It became an organized sport, where rules were established and clubs formed to embrace the game. Its popularity extended to communities in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Quebec and Ontario. >> Click on the numbers below to view 6 pages describing the rules of lacrosse.