It has been said that necessity is the mother of invention, and this would be very applicable to a group of citizens and community league members in the relatively new residential area of Mill Woods. The time would be the mid 1970's and this group represented concerned parents who had to transport their children through out the city and surrounding communities to participate in minor hockey activities. It was decided that with the large population growth being experienced in the Mill Woods community and the significant demand for minor hockey facilities, an arena complex was urgently needed to fulfil these needs. The group approached the City of Edmonton for this concept, however the timing was not optimum for projects of this nature, and the decision was made to build an arena themselves with the support of the four existing community leagues of Mill Woods: Leefield, North Millbourne, Knottwood and Lakewood.
This decision was the genesis of the creation of the Mill Woods Cultural and Recreation Facility Association or MCARFA, with an initial mandate to build a modest indoor facility with two ice rinks that would be available primarily for the children of the Mill Woods community.
Through the efforts of these dedicated individuals and their respective community leagues they were able to raise the incredible amount of $500,000, which was increased with a matching grant from the province. From these humble beginnings the complex that we know as the Mill Woods Recreation Centre was built in partnership with the City of Edmonton.