Our Year-Round Cycle of Storytelling


As British Columbians and Canadians, we typically think of springtime as the period of renewal. The maple blossoms are followed by the tulips and the countdown to longer days, warmer weather and prime time for outdoor sports, recreation and physical activities.

Yet as supporters, advocates and custodians of the BC Sports Hall of Fame, there’s no question that the turning of the calendar at year-end – in other words, NOW — is an equal if not even more important period of renewal in the governance, management and operations of the BC Sports Hall.

We not only usher in the New Year, we welcome another cycle of the annual storytelling that beats at the very heart of the BC Sports Hall. It’s the storytelling that we take on as promoters of BC sport history, heritage and culture – telling the stories of the athletes, coaches, builders, pioneers, media and teams that have shaped our province as one of the most dynamic hubs of sport development in Canada.

That has become even more the case coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, a two-year plus period that saw us strive to elevate the storytelling that we do digitally, socially and virtually. It was in the spring of 2020 – just weeks into the global pandemic – that we began to pump up the volume on “On This Day in BC Sport History”. Thanks to the leadership and encyclopedic knowledge of our curator Jason Beck, “On This Day in BC Sport History” has become as big a part of our annual cycle of storytelling as the induction cycle that adds to our pantheon of honoured members (now at 442 individuals and 67 teams ).

The beauty of “On This Day in BC Sport History” is that the stories simply do not get too old to recount each and every year. In fact, every time we go through the annual cycle, the best stories seem to become even more relevant and meaningful. Jason and our curatorial team are literally creating “appointment television” for us, rolling out the major milestones in BC sport history on such a regular basis that we will soon have special moments to celebrate on each and every one of the 365 days that mark the BC sport calendar.

Not only are we now more than 32 months into “On This Day in BC Sport History” on our various digital and social platforms, we are approaching that on the radio version of these gems of sport history (“This Week in BC Sport History”, which is heard every week on BNN Bloomberg Radio 1410 Vancouver, CFAX 1070 Victoria, AM 1150 Kelowna and Radio NL 610 AM Kamloops).

Next month marks another New Year, of course. Yet it will also set the stage for the beginning of our fourth cycle of milestones in BC sport history, which was admittedly one of our strategic and tactical responses to the closures, lockdowns and limitations of the pandemic in the spring of 2020. Our goal is to work even harder to post, distribute and celebrate the wonderful moments of BC sport history that give us our purpose and our responsibility as the go-to storytellers of the BC sport community.

It is a year-end reminder for us to say thank you to all of those who are part of the BC Sports Hall of Fame family.

Thanks to our Honoured Members, for doing what they’ve done to become part of the story of British Columbia and for continuing to be willing to share their stories with each New Year;

Thanks to our nominators, those who help ensure that we don’t forget those worthy of consideration for selection for induction into the BC Sports Hall – we’ve said it before, we’ll say it again: Without the nominators who take the time to nominate our best all-time athletes, coaches, builders, pioneers, media and teams, we don’t have those stories where they belong – as accessible as we can make them to young British Columbians – of all ages – in all corners of the province;

Thanks to our “selectors”, the members of our Selection Committee chaired by Wendy Pattenden, vice-chaired by Stan Wong and made up of some of the most thoughtful Hall of Famers, media and community leaders in British Columbia;

Thanks to our Trustees who make up the Board of the BC Sports Hall of Fame, giving of themselves throughout the year to help us get better and bigger each year (and with a special thanks to our Honourary Trustees);

Thanks to all those other volunteers who want to make a difference in the promotion of BC sport history, heritage and culture (volunteering at our annual Induction Event, sitting on standing committees or special task forces or otherwise supporting the core paid staff of our BC Sports Hall of Fame Society;

Thanks to Bill Maclagan and the Board of Directors of the BC Sports Hall of Fame Foundation, who are approaching the $3 million mark in our legacy fund, with much higher aspirations down the road to help sustain and safeguard the future of the Sports Hall;

Thanks to Anna Nyarady and the Council of Chairs, made up of all living former Chairs of the BC Sports Hall of Fame, lending their support, wisdom and sense of commitment to our Society after all of these years;

Thanks to our friends at viaSport and the sport branch of the Government of British Columbia for investing in the stories that make sport such an important part of the fabric of our society, part of the backbone of communities throughout BC;

Thanks to Sport BC and all of the provincial sports organizations doing what they do to help promote and develop their respective sports; including by nominating the people and teams that have defined success in their communities over the years;

Thanks to BC community gaming for your increasing support of our Hall and local, regional and sport-specific halls, museums, galleries and exhibits around the province. And on that note, thank you to all of the staff, volunteers, and municipal supporters who stand behind the more than 40 such halls of fame across BC. We are so thankful for the energy of collaboration that is growing in the BC Sports Hall Network co-chaired by Alison Noble and Jim Hughson (of the BC Hockey Hall of Fame);

Thanks to those local, regional and sport specific halls who are expressing interest in hosting the BC Sports Hall of Fame Annual Summit in the years to come – and to the Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame for hosting earlier this year and for the Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame who will be hosting the Greater Victoria 2023 Annual Summit September 14-16, 2023. Also thanks to the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame, BC Lacrosse and the City of New Westminster who piloted the Annual Summit in 2019 and to the City of Surrey who stepped up and helped us host a hybrid/virtual Annual Summit in 2021;

Thanks to those of you who make annual donations or one-time donations to the BC Sports Hall of Fame – which set record levels in 2021 despite us being mired in the middle of the pandemic;

Thanks to all of those community foundations and like-minded corporate citizens who are investing in the BC Sports Hall of Fame;

Thanks to the Canadian Association for Sport Heritage (CASH), Canadian Museum Association and others who share our commitment to history, heritage and culture nationally and internationally, including the International Sports Heritage Association (ISHA);

Thanks to the members of Club 1966, demonstrating your belief in what we do by signing up as annual members;

Thanks to all those who visit the BC Sports Hall of Fame each year, both local residents and tourists who are as inspired by amazing sport stories as we are;

Thanks to those who consider the BC Sports Hall of Fame for their special events and functions, which we are thrilled to host whenever given the chance;

Thanks to those who buy tables and tickets to our annual Induction Event, helping us to celebrate the culmination of our annual Induction cycle each year;

Thanks to those who donate items, prizes and other goodies to help us raise monies at the Induction Event;

Thanks to the team at BC Place and BC Pavilion Corp for being such great hosts and partners, something that we never take for granted each and every day of the year;

Thanks to those who sponsor the BC Sports Hall of Fame and our events and programs and to all those who WILL sponsor the Sports Hall as we bounce back strong from the challenges and limitations of the pandemic;

Thanks to all of our official suppliers and service providers, always giving us the special consideration we need to optimize the resources available to us;

Thanks to all of those who believe in the power of sport and sport storytelling, who contribute in many different ways, both big and small…because at the end of the day, every small step helps us take a big one;

And of course, on behalf of the BC Sports Hall of Fame Board of Trustees, thanks to our dedicated staff team led by Chief Executive Nicholas Cartmell and featuring Jason Beck, Barb Chu and Nikki Lajeunesse. We thank you for not only your professionalism and daily commitments, but for the passion and energy you bring to the Sports Hall at BC Place, day-in, day-out.

Those thanks are an important part of our own annual cycle in which we are aspiring to be the best BC Sports Hall that we can be, year-in, year-out. Thanks to you, we are stronger TOGETHER!

Tom Mayenknecht is the Chair of the BC Sports Hall of Fame. A principal at Emblematica Brand Builders in Vancouver and a nationally-recognized sport business commentator and founder and host of The Sport Market sport business radio show, he is a strong advocate for KidSport, Right To Play and other children’s charities. He is also a member of the Ringette Canada Hall of Fame as a builder.