The Bullring, University of Guelph. Image by Isabella Paganelli.

The Bullring located at the heart of the University of Guelph campus is known today as the school’s coffeehouse and a relaxing place to enjoy its full menu, live music nights, open stage and comfortable seating.

Originally built in 1901, the building was primarily used for livestock auctions and shows including cattle, horses, and sheep, as they’d enter the building walk around the parameter of the room taking advantage of the circle shape. During this time the University campus had not been established as the campus only consisted of the Ontario Agricultural College, the Macdonald Institute, and experimental farm fields. 

Around 1970 following the establishment of the University of Guelph, the Bullring was converted to cater to the needs of the students, becoming a campus pub. The University repurposed the building keeping the original walls, windows and round ceilings. In 2003 the Bullring became a licensed coffeehouse where students can have a place to sit, study, and enjoy the ambiance of a campus coffeehouse. 

The Bullrings’ significance is seen in its contribution to student life, as for over 100 years students have enjoyed the uniqueness the building has to offer, including being the only building on the campus with one continuous wall supporting the roof. The Bullring, run by the Central Student’s Association employs students of the university to increase student engagement with their school and the campus community. The Bullring continues to be a highly visited place on campus unique to the University of Guelph and like no other place on campus.

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