MUSIC - He can't love you by the Michael Stanley band
Photographed in 1987, 1994, 1995 and 2003 using film.
I was LUCKY as the arena had just closed in 1994. When I went to the coliseum, there was a security guard in back. The guy was really cool and let me in to roam around. And get a few souvenirs :)
Richfield Coliseum - Opened in 1974, closed in 1994 and demolished in 1999. The old arena site has been turned back into woodlands. Known as the "palace on the prairie"
Location - 2923 Streetsboro Road Richfield, Ohio.
Richfield Coliseum was built in the burbs, literally in the middle of nowhere. It was near the confluence of the Ohio Turnpike and Interstates 77 and 271. The coliseum was constructed about 20 miles south of Cleveland in the small rural township of Richfield Ohio. If you want to try and find it, the address was 2923 Streetsboro Road. Harsh winter snows, as well as a two lane road in and out of the Coliseum made travel to games awful. When it opened in 1974, it was state of the art, but quickly became antiquated. The luxury boxes were far away from the court / ice. The main tenant was the Cleveland Cavs of the NBA. After playing their first five years in the dank Cleveland arena, the move to the coliseum was well received. The Cavs became a good draw with an exciting brand of basketball. Unfortunately, they could never make the NBA finals.
The other 3 major tenants were the Cleveland Crusaders of the old WHA. The Crusaders played in the coliseum from 1974 thru the 1976 season. Like the Cavs, the Crusaders played their first two seasons in the old arena in downtown Cleveland. After the 1976 season, the NHL relocated the California Golden Seals from Oakland to Cleveland. Meanwhile the Crusaiders picked up and moved to Minnesota to become the second incarnation of the WHA Fighting Saints. The newly transplanted Seals changed their name to the Cleveland Barons, and lasted three seasons. After the 1979 season, the financially troubled Barons merged with another team in money trouble, the Minnesota North Stars. The Barons players moved to the upper Midwest and thus major league hockey ended in Cleveland.
The Cleveland Force of the MISL had the second longest tenure in the arena. They lasted from 1978 thru 1992, when the MISL folded. Hockey returned to the arena for two years in the form of the Cleveland Lumberjacks of the IHL. The Lumberjacks played at the Coliseum from 1992 till the building closed in 1994. The Jacks moved with the Cavs to the new downtown Gund arena and lasted until the IHL folded after the 2001 season.
The final event in the old building (it wasn't OLD at all) was a Bon Jovi concert. In 1981 the NBA held its all star game in Richfield. Most major concert acts played here also. Alas, it was too far from downtown Cleveland to be a viable arena. After the Bon Jovi concert, the building was sealed up, although I did get in before it was sealed! Richfield Coliseum lay abandoned for 5 years before it was torn down. The site was left to return to woodland as part of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. No marker is anywhere to be found to let people know what was once here.
A RARE shot of the Cavs practice facility at the back of the coliseum.
August 2003, and no trace of the coliseum exists.