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Export date: Sat Jun 15 5:41:14 2024 / +0000 GMT

Aurora Sports Hall of Fame’s AGM celebrates 2023 events and contemplates induction of teams starting in 2025


The Aurora Sports Hall of Fame's (ASHOF) Annual General Meeting unfolded at the Aurora Public Library on Wednesday evening.

More than 40 members and guests attended the downtown gathering on a drizzly night, but the damp April conditions outside did not affect the warm mood inside as Gerry Miller called the meeting to order and Bob McRoberts delivered the Land Acknowledgement.

ASHOF President and Chair Javed Khan conducted a Year in Review before informing attendees that the organization's biggest event—its 11th Annual Induction Ceremony—will take place at the new Aurora Town Square on November 7, 2024 commencing at 5.30 p.m.

Khan noted that the AGM served its purpose “to showcase and celebrate the Aurora Sports Hall of Fame and the great things [that] our 40+ volunteers continue to do every year.”

“This [past] year was certainly no exception. We continue to learn and develop as any organization does. 2023 was a very successful year and 2024 will turn out to be another successful year.”

The organization's congenial leader acknowledged that the AGM also gave the organization an opportunity “to showcase and celebrate events with all of our volunteers, Directors of the Board, our Hall of Famers, our sponsors, our local media folks, and any other participants from the community who wanted to come and hear about the organization.”

The most significant question during the meeting's Q&A session was offered by 2015 Inductee Lowell McClenny who inquired about the induction of teams into the Aurora Sports Hall of Fame.

McClenny was assured by Khan that the induction of teams will be a feature of future induction ceremonies and the Induction Committee is currently drawing up criteria for teams as well as consulting neighboring Halls of Fame regarding how they have inducted teams into their community sports shrines.

After the meeting, Khan amplified the process through which ASHOF is prepared to go to induct local teams as early as 2025.

“This question has been on our table for a while. It has now reenergized the members of the Board and the Induction Committee to look at this and understand some of the key challenges that we are going to find. My vision is to be able to take this year and go through what we think will be the best process to induct teams from a logistical standpoint, budgetary, communications, and also learn from other Sports Hall of Fames around our community, including Richmond Hill.  The vision would be to have something ready to launch regarding our first teams in our 2025 Class.  The question is: Are we going to do this every year or every second year? It's one of many questions we have to work through.”

The organization's Financial Report, delivered by Brian Roberts, disclosed that the First Annual Celebrity Golf Classic at Pheasant Run netted ASHOF $7,600 and the fiscal year ended with a $1,475 surplus.

ASHOF's committee chairs delivered annual reports including Mike Smith's Corner Stone Committee's summary which promoted the Second Annual Celebrity Golf Classic. It will take place on June 20, 2024 at Pheasant Run GC.  Smith noted that 30 per cent of the 2023 tournament's net proceeds were donated to CMHA and 40 per cent of this year's tournament spots are sold. Early bird prices will end on May 15.

He also confirmed that Geranium Homes will be returning as the Main Sponsor of the Induction Ceremony on November 7.

Kristen Dajia delivered the Education Committee's highlights including news that the second volume of a very popular comic book developed by Paul Riley, entitled Heroes of the Hall, is being developed to encapsulate the lives of more ASHOF inductees.

Dajia also noted the success of the “Sports History Alive” initiative that was received warmly and enthusiastically by local schools and retirement residences including Chartwell where the exhibits touched the hearts of attendees who recognized relatives in the photographs and artefacts displayed.

She also pointed out the success of AHSOF's Student-Athlete of the Month—a regular feature appearing in The Auroran.

The Induction Committee's new chair, Melanie Pearson, updated attendees that the 2024 ASHOF inductees will be announced in early June. Pearson also took time to thank Wendy Browne for her invaluable contributions to the Hall of Fame, specifically as the long-time chair of the Induction Ceremony. Browne was recognized as Aurora's Citizen of the Year in 2023.

The meeting ended on a celebratory note when Kristen Fawcett-Dajia's forthcoming induction into the Cobourg Sports Hall of Fame for Track, Volleyball, and Rugby was announced by the ASHOF executive.

The induction dinner to honor the long-time high school teacher-coach will be held June 14 at the Best Western in Cobourg.

All in all, the Aurora Sports Hall of Fame AGM provided an upbeat review of 2023's accomplishments and set the table for the organization's big events of 2024.  It was evident that ASHOF's motto “Their Legacy. Our Future” was much on display both in word and deed at the Aurora Public Library on Wednesday.

By Jim Stewart

Post date: 2024-04-25 11:32:57
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