ST. STEPHEN – In 2020, it was announced that the Greater St. Stephen Sports Wall of Fame induction ceremony would be put on hold until 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, for the same reason, the committee has decided to postpone the ceremony again, and now it looks like it won’t be taking place until next spring.
Don Walker, a member of the board of directors for the wall of fame, said the committee met last week, and after careful consideration decided it would be in the best interest of everyone if the ceremony were to be postponed until 2022 when things are getting back to normal.
“There’s no way we can really move forward with the induction ceremony on that particular time,” said Walker. “We had hoped for September 25, but we can’t do that. It looks like we’re going to have to go until 2022. It’s all COVID-related.
“We felt it was definitely too early to make an announcement. We don’t know if borders will be open late this summer. We didn’t want to go ahead and do all of that work to prepare and then find out at the last minute that we couldn’t even have it anyway. There’s so much uncertainty out there with COVID that we felt it was necessary to postpone again.”
Walker said with so much uncertainty regarding many planned events, the committee felt there could be the possibility if the event was scheduled for this fall as planned, it could be cancelled at the last minute due to COVID-19 restrictions. So, they decided to set a new date of May 28, 2022 for the induction ceremony.
There are three categories for nominations, and at the moment, there are three people/teams nominated to receive their place on the Greater St. Stephen Sports Wall of Fame. In the Athlete category, the nominee is Tom Stewart. Pat Zwicker has been nominated in the Builder category, and the 1957 – 1960 St. Stephen St. Croix Intermediate “A” Baseball Team, which received consecutive Border League, N.B. Provincial, and Maritime championships has been nominated for the Team category. Walker hinted there may be more inductions at the 2022 ceremony.
“In a normal year, it would be an athlete, a builder, and a team,” said Walker. “That’s what we had for the one that we’ve had to postpone twice. We were hoping for a spring one, then we said we’d have a fall one. Now both of those dates are gone and so we’re moving to 2022. The only question we have, the committee will determine that in our next meeting, are we going to add one or two possible inductees to make four or five. We’re almost two years behind what we would normally be doing. We will explore the option of adding one or two inductees for that ceremony.”
The first people to be inducted into the Greater St. Stephen Sports Wall of Fame are all local residents who are in the New Brunswick Sports Hall of Fame. Walker said there were 11 people who were the first to be inducted here.
“Kind of hard not to be on the St. Stephen Wall of Fame when you’re already in the New Brunswick Hall of Fame.”