The 40th annual North Bay Sports Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Dinner planned for May 2 at the Davedi Club has been cancelled due to the social-distancing required to slow the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"It is unfortunate we were not able to hold the dinner this year but with the current pandemic it was only right that we do not put the health of the recipients, their families, friends and the employees of the Davedi Club at risk," stated hall of fame chairman Bill Jacko in a media release Friday, March 20. "For those who have paid for their tickets, we will be issuing refunds within the next three weeks."
A Bit of the Bay Magazine featured the inductions and awards on Page 24 of the March edition.
The four new inductees (Sue Fisher, Len Gushe, Claude Peloquin and Steve Walkom) will enter the hall next year, along with those chosen in 2021. Presentations to the 2019 award winners will be recognized later this year at a time and place to be announced when decided.
Fisher earned her way as figure skating official and executive for more than 35 years and Gushe raised the bar as a world-class triathlete. Peloguin helped build the sport of curling serving as an official at regional to international levels. Walkom enters the hall after an impressive career as an NHL referee. He skated with stripes on in more than 1,100 regular season and playoff games before taking on the role as director of officials.
The 2019 North Bay Sports Award Winners were also announced last month:
Waterski champion Jaimee Bull and wheelchair tennis star Rob Shaw will share the Jack Burrows Memorial Award for Sports Achievement.
Dan Kapitanchuk will be recognized for Dedication to Soccer (North Bay Youth Soccer).
The James Kelly Memorial Award for Team of the Year goes to the North Bay Major Midget AAA Trappers.
The North Bay Blaze Novice Girls’ Select team will receive the Dominico Family Award for Contribution to Softball/Baseball.
The George Martyn Memorial Trophy for Basketball is being presented to Rick Cowden.
Long-time West Ferris Trojans coach Rick Mitchell will receive the Judge Harry J Reynolds Memorial Trophy for Hockey.
Al Brennan Memorial Trophy for Coach of the Year goes to skiing coach Jim Forsyth.
Mark Brown, who helped organize, among many other events, the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling at Memorial Gardens in October, is being recognized with the Jim Aspin Memorial Award for Executive of the Year.
The Mort Fellman Memorial Award for Female Athlete of the Year goes to competitive tennis player Emma Shea.
Sharing the Britt Jessup Memorial Award for Male Athlete of the Year are football player James Piper and long-distance runner Keon Wallingford.
The Pete Palangio Award for Contribution to Sport is being presented to Richard Lachance.
Moe Bedard is being recognized for many decades of sports event involvement with the Peter Handley Friend of Sport award.
Receiving the Mike Mitchell-Larry Avery Memorial Award for Football is West Ferris Trojans coach Mark Robertson.
The John Toswell Memorial Award for Curling goes to Mike Callahan.
And Hudson Booth is being honoured with the Special Olympics Award of Excellence.