Port Coquitlam Sports Heroes Showcased in New Sports Hall of Fame
The inspiring stories of national hero Terry Fox and local pro athletes, rising sports stars and dedicated volunteers are showcased in Port Coquitlam’s new high-tech Sports Hall of Fame.
Now open at Hyde Creek Recreation Centre, the interactive digital exhibit features images and highlights of notable and rising Port Coquitlam athletes, and was unveiled Friday at the 2018 Port Coquitlam Sport Awards & Inaugural Sports Hall of Fame Inductions event.
“Sports play a huge role in our community, from our top-tier athletes to the thousands of children, teens and adults who play or volunteer at all levels,” Mayor Greg Moore said. “The Port Coquitlam Sports Hall of Fame recognizes this very important aspect of our community’s heritage and source of PoCo spirit and pride.”
The project was supported by the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Canada 150: Celebrating B.C. Communities and their Contributions to Canada grant program. It will have a permanent home in the new Community Recreation Complex when it opens in 2021 in downtown Port Coquitlam.
Among those featured is Terry Fox, an all-around athlete who participated in baseball, basketball, soccer, rugby and track & field in high school and was named athlete of the year in Grade 12. Fox helped the Vancouver Cable Cars win the National Wheelchair Basketball Championships in 1979 before launching his Marathon of Hope in 1980 and becoming an unintended hero and a symbol of hope to millions.
Other inaugural Hall of Famers include:
- Bret Anderson (football) – 13 years with the BC Lions, winner of the Grey Cup in 2000 and 2006, accomplished high school and university football and basketball player.
- Tina Racine-Connelly (track) – multiple national titles (10,000 metre), competed in the 2000 Olympics, won a bronze in the 2004 World Cross Country Championships.
- Chris Rinke (wrestling) – six-time national champion, medaled in the 1982 Commonwealth Games, 1983 Pan American Games, and 1984 Olympics.
- Dan Payne (football and wrestling) – 14 years with the Canadian Football League, four Grey Cup (1989, 1996, 1997 and 2000), world-class wrestler and 1988 Olympic athlete.
- Mike Gates (lacrosse) – Gates Park namesake, two-time league MVP, six-time league all-star, Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee. Served 20 years on City Council.
“To get nominated and inducted in the first year of this great new hall of fame, and going in with Terry Fox and guys like Dan Payne and Chris Rinke, some of my old friends, it’s pretty overwhelming and pretty special,” Anderson said at the awards event.
Connelly noted: “It means a lot to me because I like to be a role model for young kids, especially girls, and my own two daughters. . .they’re athletes themselves and I think that it’s really important to show them that hard work does pay off.”
Other inductees included:
- Four young athletes who are rising stars in their sports: Kinga Wisniewska (water polo), Jarrett Chong (track and field), Ryann McCready (wrestling) and Ben Nichols (swimming);
- Four elite professional athletes: Jasmin Duehring (cycling), Kadin Chung (soccer), Zach Hamill (ice hockey) and Megan Rosenlund (volleyball); and
- Four outstanding sports volunteers: Josh Wahl (lacrosse coach), Don Knudsen (skating coach), Mike Bowen (founding president of Port Coquitlam Sports Alliance) and Bruce Moore (coach, manager and sponsor of over 80 teams).
“This recognition means a lot to those who play, compete, volunteer or promote sport in our community,” said Cllr. Glenn Pollock, chair of the city’s Healthy Community Committee and a long-time active member of Port Coquitlam’s lacrosse community. “Hopefully the new Hall of Fame will inspire the next generation of athletes as well as the many sports volunteers who make it all possible.”
The exhibit was created in collaboration with NGX Interactive, an award-winning company that creates digital exhibits for museums all around the world, including the BC Sports Hall of Fame and the Richmond Oval.
The city partnered with the PoCo Sport Alliance, PoCo Heritage and Kwikwetlem First Nation to develop the content.
For more information, visit www.portcoquitlam.ca/halloffame.
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For additional information, contact:
Manager of Cultural Development and Community Services
City of Port Coquitlam
Photos available upon request.
Manager of Communications & Admin Services
City of Port Coquitlam
Tel 604.927.5335 Cel 604.218.0533