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The St. Nicholas Men’s Club honoured Peter J. Manastyrsky as its Ukrainian Sportsman of the Year at its 47th annual dinner on May 11.

Manastyrsky is the president of the Winnipeg Dynamo Kyiv Soccer Club that plays in the premier division of the Manitoba Major Soccer League.

He’s been involved in men’s soccer since 1992 and with the Ukraine Youth Cup indoor co-ed tournament since 2003.


Nia Perron and Paul Thiessen of the Winnipeg Rowing Club are the recipients of 2011-12 Peter Nykoluk Rowing Scholarships.

Perron, who has been rowing for six years, has represented Manitoba at the national level and also coaches at the club.

Thiessen, who participated in the 2011 national rowing championships, is training in Toronto with the goal of making the national team.

The scholarships, each worth $2,700, will help the pair pursue both their rowing and educational goals. Peter Nykoluk was a competitive rower, who died in 1990 while coming to the aid of his teammates involved in an accident en route to a regatta in Minneapolis.


Two synchronized swimming clubs from Winnipeg have received 2012 Club Excellence awards from Synchro Canada.

The Winnipeg Synchro Club received a silver club grant of $750 and the Aquatica Club a bronze grant of $350.

Nineteen clubs from across Canada were recognized for a combination of business and organizational success along with athlete, coaching and volunteer development.


Softball umpire Gerry Howard is calling balls and strikes for his 50th consecutive season.

He got his start in the Winnipeg Industrial Fastball League under umpire-in-chief Gord Law.
From there, he went on to work in senior ball and the Western Major Fastball League and became the UIC of Softball Manitoba and Softball Canada and deputy director of officiating for the International Softball Federation.

An advocate of umpire development, he was a leader in the training of slo-pitch umpires provincially and at the national level.

His work on and off the diamond has earned him induction into the provincial, national and international softball halls of fame and in 1996 he was the first official inducted into the Manitoba Sports HOF.

This season he’s umpiring in the Blue Pitch League and senior slo-pitch at John Blumberg. 


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Curling induction finds perfect weight

Toast and Coffee aren’t fans of having dignitaries speak at sports dinners, in particular hall of fame induction dinners where the crowd is more interested in hearing from the inductees.

When the Manitoba Curling Hall of Fame held its induction dinner on May 6 at the Canad Inns Polo Park, the program listed ten people at the microphone including MC Clayton Dreger, the president of the Manitoba Curling Reporters, and HOF member Cathy Gauthier, who was to introduce the builders and teams being inducted. Scary we thought.

Because it was the Hall’s 25th induction ceremony, Bob Picken, who was there from the beginning, provided the crowd with an interesting address about the early days and the attempt to get a Canadian Curling Hall of Fame in Manitoba.

Lt.-Gov. Phillip Lee was next up and he was to be followed by provincial Justice Minister Andrew Swan and Winnipeg Coun. Grant Nordman, not a pleasant prospect if we would be subjected to the usual type of platitudes prepared by speech writers.

That wasn’t the case. The Lt.-Gov. was entertaining and even mentioned how Picken would show up in his restaurant near the CBC building almost every day around 4 p.m. when he was broadcasting sports for the CBC.

Swan and Nordman both are curlers so they spoke about their experiences with the game. Swan curls at the Thistle and Nordman at Assiniboine Memorial.

Sport Manitoba CEO Jeff Hnatiuk, Cindy Maddock from the Canadian Curling Association and Curl Manitoba president Resby Coutts also brought greetings and president Bob McNaughton spoke on behalf of the HOF directors.

After intermission they got to the inductees. Bruce Boreham, who worked for many years with the Macdonald Brier and wrote a history in 1970, was inducted posthumously as a builder.

Nancy Rummery and Heather Helston both received standing ovations after their induction as builders. Nancy is a former Manitoba Ladies Curling Association president who is credited with having the vision to take the provincial ladies championship out of curling clubs and into an arena setting.

No one will dispute that Heather has been the glue for the HOF in her 20 years as volunteer curator.

Honoured as teams were three Canadian championship teams skipped by Ken Watson and two by Howard Wood Sr., and the Heather squad of skip Jim Dunstone, third Carol Dunstone, second Del Stitt and lead Elaine Jones that won the 1980 Canadian mixed championship.

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