Established in 1913
The Ward's Island Association (WIA) was established in 1913 as a not-for-profit organization to represent the residents of what once was a summer tent community on Ward's Island, and "to provide members with suitable accommodation, means and appliances for the pursuit and promotion of amateur sports and pastimes, and to promote the general interests of the members".
Today, we continue to connect and support the island community through social events, sports, and special initiatives.
The 2022 WIA Executive
President: Alison Gzowski
Vice President: Jacquey Malcolm
Secretary: Jay Bascom
Treasurer: Martin Mittelstaedt
Building chair: Mitch Felton
Membership chair: Mark Zambonelli
Entertainment co-chair: Sean Bonar
Entertainment co-chair: Chris Wilson
Tennis co-chair: Lacey Hammond-Harrington
Tennis co-chair: Shaunna Bruton
Bowling chair: Scott Stein
Founding of the WIA
Fred Armstrong was the first president of the WIA. In 1914 the Association began publishing the "Wards Island Weekly". Over the years, various aquatic and land sports were provided, together with "Supervision", a weekday summer sports program for children in the Island community. The first bowling green was situated near the Wiman Building, west of Sixth Street and south of Bayview Avenue, but the land was too uneven there and a new green was created on the present site about 1918. Tennis courts were later installed behind the green.
The WIA Clubhouse
The front of the WIA's original clubhouse originally built in 1918 remains intact as the front section of the "Little WIA Clubhouse" or "Administration Building". Renovations to the little clubhouse were completed in November 2007. Most large gatherings and events were held in the 1888-built Wiman Shelter, located near Fifth and Lakeshore, behind the third base line of the ball diamond, however the newly formed Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto demolished the structure in 1956. The large Clubhouse we know today was built over the winter of 1937-1938.