Hall induction ceremony now a biennial event

Joey Payeur

What originally was intended to be an annual affair now will be held every other year.
Fort Frances Sports Hall of Fame organizer Terry Ogden said Friday that there will be no induction ceremony next summer.
Instead, new inductees will be added every second year, with the next round slated for 2017.
The criteria related to the number of candidates being selected for induction also will be altered, with the amount of individual inductees likely to rise from the current three to at least five—and possibly even six—for the next ceremony.
Ogden said a variety of factors entered into the decision on pushing back the induction.
“No. 1, we were concerned about the event’s sustainability long-term,” he explained, referring to discussions surrounding the decision between himself and Dave Egan, the only other full-time organizing member.
“We didn’t think we could do it every year,” he noted.
“The number of candidates you have can run thin if you do it every year,” Ogden added.
“I talked to [2015 Hall inductee] Bob Peters and he strongly recommended to me to think about doing it this way.”
Ogden also admitted to getting somewhat burned out after planning both for this past August’s first-ever induction and also helping with the “Duncan Keith Day” celebrations before that.
“I don’t want to make this a job—I want to keep this fun,” he reasoned.
“I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a bit of stress in putting together the induction ceremony.”
Ogden said other options were discussed, including having an induction ceremony next year and then every two years after that, as well as continuing to collect nominations right now until another ceremony was held in 2017.
But he said this ultimately appeared to be the best way to go—especially to those related to the organizers.
“It was unanimous with our wives and families,” chuckled Ogden about the positive reaction to altering the induction schedule.
“When you get into something like this, certainly wives and family members become involved in helping because it’s so time-consuming.”
And Ogden isn’t worried about any detractors when it comes to the change.
“I know some people will criticize it,” he conceded. “But anything you take on in this life, there will always be some people who criticize you and others who will say it’s good.
“We want to make it a big event and you have to consider we won’t have the 11 inductees who were already in the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame next time,” Ogden said.
“We also won’t have the 1959-60 [Fort Frances] Canadians’ hockey team, which probably had 85 supporters come out alone for this year’s induction,” he noted.