Sports hall of fame wins trophy

The Nanaimo Museum's Sports Hall of Fame is the new, permanent home of the Wally Buono Award.

Mike Schaper

Mike Schaper

The city’s sports hall of fame added a prestigious piece of hardware to its trophy case.

The Nanaimo Museum’s Sports Hall of Fame held a press conference today to announce that it is the new, permanent home of the Wally Buono Award. The bronze statuette is presented each year to Canada’s top junior-aged football player.

“It’s a huge win-win for us,” said Mayor John Ruttan at the unveiling. “We are a sports community.”

Vancouver Island Raiders owner Hadi Abassi was the one who led the push to bring the award to the Nanaimo Museum. He gained the support of the award’s patrons, Christina Saint Marche and her family, of the Saint Bernard Pass Charitable Foundation.

Wally Buono is in Toronto for Grey Cup festivities, but has indicated he will visit Nanaimo’s sports hall of fame in January for an official dedication ceremony.

He gets the final say on each year’s winner of the award. Moving forward, Canadian Junior Football League players, Canadian Interuniversity Sport players and Canadian-born players at U.S. colleges will all be eligible, said Saint Marche.

“Our sole purpose in all of this is now to find the most outstanding Canadian football player in North America, whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with honesty and honour and integrity,” she said.

The Raiders have had two winners in recent years. Andrew Harris won the Wally Buono Award in 2009 and Mike Schaper was selected in 2011. Schaper hadn’t been officially presented with his trophy until this week, and it turned out that wasn’t an oversight – Saint Marche was waiting for this particular occasion.

Schaper said his coaches and teammates should share in his award.

“I hope years down the road when I come in here and I see this trophy in here and I see the Raider heritage on the walls, it’s not just going to be for me, but my brothers can come in and be as proud as I am,” he said.

Just Posted

An event on the lawn of the B.C. legislature in Victoria on Tuesday to remember the 215 children whose remains were confirmed buried in unmarked graves outside a Kamloops residential school. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Canada’s racist systems cannot ever be forgiven

Teen letter writer from Nunavut calls for truth and reconciliation

Nanaimo is the first city in Canada to subscribe to the Chonolog environment photo-monitoring system, which allow residents to contribute photos of habitat restoration projects that are converted to time lapse sequences showing environmental changes. (Chris Bush/ News Bulletin)
Nanaimo residents invited to be citizen scientists by sharing habitat restoration photos

Nanaimo first city in Canada to sign up for Chronolog environment photo monitoring service

Regional District of Nanaimo is seeking input from the public for its transit redevelopment strategy. (News Bulletin file)
Public input sought as RDN works on transit redevelopment strategy

RDN wants to know where people want bus stops, shelters and pedestrian and cycling connections

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

(PQB News file photo)
Fireworks report highlights enforcement challenges for Regional District of Nanaimo

Director: ‘I just think it’s wasting everybody’s time’

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps near Nanaimo

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

Most Read