Ice Chips & Canoe Quips

Rainbow Ridge record wrecked!

Congratulations to Aundeck Omni Kaning’s Scott Madahbee who started off his summer in fine fashion. On June 21 he broke the course record at Rainbow Ridge in Manitowaning by shooting a 65. Still lots of summer to break your record now, Scotty!

Sport spotlights!

How many out there know that Wiikwemkoong Ogimaa Duke Peltier was an NHL prospect long before he entered politics? As a young man, he patrolled the defense position with the Jr A Weyburn Red Wings of the SIJHL. Following his Weyburn career he advanced to the CWAA with the University of Saskatchewan for two years where he was an important cog in the play of the defensive crew. Duke was a smooth- skating, accurate shooter who decided to come home rather than play minor pro. In Northern Ontario he was well-known as a go-to recruit. Now, as ogimaa of Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory he is leading in a much more important role. Hats off to Ogimaa Peltier.

Just a note here to recognize a great teacher and fitness role model, Jon Balfe. A product of North Bay, and from a large family of athletes, he now teaches at our Manitoulin Secondary School where he has established a fitness program of a very high caliber. He and his wife Tina makes sure that their children get involved in as many sports as possible. 

The Balfe family has been a regular at the Mindemoya Classic triathlon (Run, Paddle, Pedal) since Annie was a baby and ripped through the bumpy bike trail in a trailer (Annie just graduated Grade 8!) Mr Balfe also gives back in as he coaches a number of sports teams. Jon is a huge advocate of personal improvement and thus has reformed the focus of track and field day at Central Manitoulin Public School, involving his math students in authentic learning opportunities. 

He comes by his athleticism honestly as his father, Tom, who now lives in Tehkummah, is a university graduate from Kent State University in Ohio where he was a regular with the varsity football team. Tom was also one of the elite basketball players at Scollard Hall in the 60s and 70s. Kudos to a top-notch athletic family.

Congratulations to another local sports legend Don “Scotty” Odjig. The Grey Coach turned 94 years young this past week. Scotty was known across Ontario as a winning, hard-working hockey coach with the Wiikwemkoong Hawks. He coached his team to many tournament victories against higher level teams as well as winning NOHA and regional Silver Stick titles. 

Don is a real fitness proponent and many continue to follow his example in Wiiky. He has won many age division titles, particularly 10K runs. Don is also an avid and excellent golfer beating many a younger, up-and-coming challenger.

For years he was the recreation director where he also coached softball. The gentleman also was a great curler often playing with then local legends Denzil Spence and Father Felix S.J. He once told my Dad that he then thought living past 70 wasn’t one of his goals. He said that on the occasion of his 59th birthday. But here we are 44 years later! What a guy, keep going Scotty.

A good sport is good for sports.