58th Annual Hall of Fame Banquet and Induction: Nancy Sclafani was inducted in absentia. (Most pix by Stan McCormack) Stan Speaks: I want to express appreciation, on behalf of all FL Shufflers, to Neil Simpson for his outstanding contribution to our game!! One example: Neil, at 04:00 (like four o’clock this morning) HAD SENT this article to the Highlands News-Sun!!
Neil Simpson Speaks: The Island View Restaurant at Sun N Lake was filled with 137 shuffleboard enthusiasts Monday evening as the Sebring Shuffleboard Club hosted the 58th annual Florida Shuffleboard Association (FSA) Hall of Fame Banquet and Induction Ceremony.
Shuffleboard has a long and storied history. Those who have played the game across Florida for many years have grown to become like a large family who all know one another and take pride in one another’s accomplishments.
A shuffler earns points by competing in tournaments as a district amateur then moves up to the state amateur level where she or he must earn still more points to qualify as a pro. When a shuffler has earned 200 points they are inducted into the Hall of Fame. This year there were five inductees who had reached the 200 point plateau.
In golf, the green jacket is worn by those who win the Masters Tournament in Augusta. In shuffleboard, the green jacket is awarded to those who accumulate 1,000 points. Currently in Florida there are three living shuffleboard masters who have reached 1,000 points. Two of them, Earl Ball, from Zephyrhills (Seated beside Earl is Glenda Brake) and (Seated beside Glen is Eileen) Glen Peltier, a Canadian snowbird from Chatham, Ontario with a winter home in Clearwater, competed in this year’s tournament and were acknowledged at the dinner.
FSA Central District President, Doug Stockman thanked the Sebring Club for organizing a great tournament and banquet, (Pic far left: Organizing Chairperson, Ruth Brown and husband Larry) Seated with the Browns are the Stockmans, President Doug and wife Pat) Sebring Mayor, John Shoop, welcomed the crowd to Sebring and Highlands County which he dubbed “our little slice of heaven”.
Those involved in shuffleboard are very concerned about the dwindling number of participants in the sport. FSA President, Dave Kudro is on a mission to bring new, younger players into the sport.
Kudro presented an “Award of Gratitude” to Colleen Austin of North Ft. Myers for her tireless efforts and always going above and beyond the call of duty. Colleen prepared a display board about each of this year’s Hall of Fame Inductees and created special bobblehead trophies for each.
Each of the player inductees was introduced by a friend, had a chance to speak about their shuffleboard career and then were awarded a Hall of Fame pin and plaque. Themes that emerged from the speeches were the camaraderie in the sport, the support received from other players to help the inductee on his or her path to 200 points and the long lasting friendships that resulted from being immersed in the world of shuffleboard.
The 2018 player inductees were: Glenna Earle of Zephyrhills, Tara Goldman from Lake Worth, Dave Kudro of Bradenton, Linda Marshman also from Zephyrhills and Nancy Sclafani, of Ellenton. Sclafani was unable to attend the ceremony due to her husband’s failing health. (Pic at top.)
The final award of the night was for Landy Adkins who was inducted into the Hall of Fame with the President’s Award. Her list of shuffleboard accomplishments in Florida and Ohio, as well as in International competition, is extensive. Adkins was the first female president of the Florida Shuffleboard Association. (Pic at top)
Narrative by Neil Simpson, Ambassador of the Heartland Games. 2018 01 16