Football Without Fans – Calgary CSC

Calgary CSC

Founded in 1993, when Jimmy O’Brien put an advert in the Calgary newspapers to see what kind of interest there was in regards to Celtic supporters. At the same time, a friend of his called Billy Bell, a Rangers supporter, did the same for his team. Between the two of them, they felt that there wasn’t enough support from either side to form a strong enough support, so they formed the Scottish Supporters Club, made up mainly of Celtic and Rangers supporters.

Jimmy was the president of the club. The first venue was a bar called the Old Manor, located in the Oakridge area of Calgary. That club ran until 1995 at various bars, including the Rotunda, Ship and Anchor, and Stinky’s.

By the end of 1995, the club had started to fizzle out, with money problems being the issue. Joe Christie then stepped up to the plate and formed Calgary CSC. Joe paid off the outstanding debt left by the Scottish Club. They watched the game at various bars around Calgary. Starting with the Ship and Anchor, the Barley Mill, and the Rose and Crown, but these bars weren’t very accommodating for the Celtic supporters.

They then went to the Gentlemen’s Club. In 1997, some of them went to the NAFCSC in Las Vegas, and that is when it was decided to form a proper committee as the club was starting to take off and it was too much for one man to manage.

So back in Calgary, they were once again looking for a new bar to watch the games, and thanks again to Jimmy O’Brien, they were able to secure Studio 82, which used to be an old cinema which still had the big screen. The manager of the bar moved to another bar called Limericks and asked if they would come along, as promises were made that they would be well looked after.

The height of their membership was during the Seville days, when they had 30 or more members. The bars they have made home are Limerick’s Bar, Peanuts Pub, the basement in Mike Sherry’s house, and Tavern 52. The time difference in mountain time has posed some challenges, especially in the dark of winter, as some games would start at 5 a.m., so pubs eventually grew tired of opening for coffee only, so they moved on.

Mike Sherry has been a mainstay at the club. His claim to fame was that he was in Lisbon when he was 16, and you can see him rush onto the field. He later found a Celtic musician on YouTube, and the music video shows him waving a flag and marching down the streets that day.

The club once went to Seattle in 2003 to see a friendly between Manchester United and Celtic. Even though Celtic lost 4-0, it was their club that made it to the front page of the newspapers. Their biggest and most important event, though, is always the NAFCSC Vegas event, which Calgary CSC has been going to for well over 20 years.

They have a strong connection with the Houston CSC for various reasons. Mike Sherry and a few others lived and worked in Houston for years (the oil and gas connection) so they are strongly tied to them when they go down to Texas.

Usually at the Vegas convention, Houston CSC and Calgary CSC will share a cabana for the pool party and the dinner table for the green and white night.

During COVID, everything stopped, and their numbers had been dwindling for years. For a time, it was just Mike Sherry and one other man who held up the Calgary CSC and watched the games in Mike’s basement. It was quite remarkable, as the other guy had to travel about 45–60 minutes by car in the dead of winter, sometimes as early as 4:30 a.m.

They had a few good turnouts even there, with about 10 being the most. They then found a new pub, Tavern 52, which is going well. The majority of the CSC, except for the new generations, are from Glasgow. For first-generation Canadians like Leigh Sherry, the Celtic clubs and family have been the source of unbelievable belonging, pride, love, and memories. She moved to Glasgow to do her degree and knew she had a built-in family.

An extract from Football Without Fans – The History of Celtic Supporters Clubs by David McIntyre (Celtic Bars). Football Without Fans – The History of Celtic Supporters Clubs is out now and available in print and kindle versions HERE.

More to follow from Football Without Fans on The Celtic Star, the Celtic supporters website. Will it be your CSC that’s featured?

You can order a copy in print or kindle from Amazon where ever you are in the world. Order your copy HERE

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

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