Wayne March is surprised to find a crowd of people outside the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre, there to celebrate and thank him, Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Wayne March is surprised to find a crowd of people outside the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre, there to celebrate and thank him, Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

VIDEO: Community offers surprise send off to Sicamous arena manager Wayne March

Former Sicamous Eagles general manager also managed rec centre for 13 years

“I’m not good with surprises,” said Wayne March, his smile suggesting he was OK with this one.

At 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 10, March stepped outside the doors to the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre and found, to his surprise, a large gathering of friends applauding and calling his name. They were there to celebrate and thank March as his last week as the rec centre’s manager came to a close.

“I’m not much for speeches but what I’ve got to say is, for the last 13 years it’s been awesome working with all of you,” March told the crowd. “I’ll leave here with good memories, thankful, so I want to thank everybody for coming out, I didn’t realize this was happening.”

Salmon Arm Minor Hockey administrator, former Parkview Elementary principal and friend, Roy Sakaki, provided a lighthearted presentation to March, showing his gratitude while poking a little fun. For March’s retirement, Sakaki offered him a single crutch to lean on, an old hockey stick to get back into hockey with and some other novelty items.

“I know Wayne’s heart is with Sicamous and the Eagles, and I know Wayne is coming to Salmon Arm, and our vice-president Mark (Delleman) thought we’d give you something to cheer when you’re in Salmon Arm,” said Sakaki, as Delleman presented March with a Salmon Arm Silverbacks jersey.

“You owe me 20 bucks for that,” joked Sakaki.

Salmon Arm Minor Hockey’s Mark Delleman and Roy Sakaki present Wayne March with a Salmon Arm Silverbacks jersey during a surprise gathering for March on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Salmon Arm Minor Hockey’s Mark Delleman and Roy Sakaki present Wayne March with a Salmon Arm Silverbacks jersey during a surprise gathering for March on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Read more: Backbone of Sicamous Eagles reflects on 26 years of Junior B

Read more: Ontario-based company gets management contract for Sicamous rec centre

After the speeches, others in the crowd offered March handshakes, hugs, cards and words of appreciation.

“It’s been a good run, I’ve enjoyed my 13 years here. I think we’ve done a lot for the arena and for hockey here,” said March.

March was the general manager of the Sicamous Eagles for 26 years, and had been involved with the rec centre’s operation in one capacity or another over that time. In April 2021, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District, which owns the arena property, announced that Nustadia Recreation Inc. would be taking over management of the recreation facility.

March recently moved to Salmon Arm with his partner Mary Rollier. He said he might volunteer with the Silverbacks, but otherwise was looking forward to getting outdoors and going fishing with Rollier.


lachlan@saobserver.net
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Sicamous

Just Posted

A for sale sign is shown in by new homes in Beckwith, Ont., just outside Ottawa, on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Thompson-Okanagan population grew despite COVID-19: report

The Chartered Professional Accountants of BC said there are 8,462 new residents in the region

Nine exhibits representing the commercial core of downtown Salmon Arm in 1910 are pictured here at R.J. Haney’s Heritage Village & Museum. (Facebook - R.J. Haney’s Heritage Village & Museum)
‘The Shuswap’s largest heritage site,’ R.J. Haney’s Village and Museum, opens to public

Haney’s restaurant, Sprig of Heather, and Children’s Discovery Centre are open as well

Graduating Grade 12 student Savannah Lamb has been awarded an approximate $40,000 scholarship from the Beedie Luminaries foundation. (Contributed)
Dedicated Salmon Arm student earns scholarship to pursue post-secondary education

Savannah Lamb is graduating from Salmon Arm Secondary with a $40,000 scholarship

Teslyn Bates, a Grade 11 student at Salmon Arm Secondary, was among four musicians from the Shuswap who won awards at the 2021 Virtual Performing Arts BC Festival held June 1-5. (Contributed)
Province takes note of young Shuswap musicians at June festival

Four local contestants receive awards at 2021 Virtual Performing Arts BC Festival

Shuswap Immigrant Services Society plans to hold a vigil on Friday, June 25 at 8 p.m. to honour the victims of what officials are calling a terrorist attack on five Muslims in London, Ont. (File photo)
Salmon Arm council holds minute of silence to honour victims of Ontario attack

Shuswap Immigrant Services Society plans vigil for Muslim family on June 25, 8 p.m. at McGuire Lake

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Vernon-Monashee NDP MLA Harwinder Sandhu supported a motion in the B.C. legislature for Canada to create a national Indigenous History month Monday, June 13, 2021. (Contributed)
Canada needs a national Indigenous History Month, Vernon MLA agrees

Harwinder Sandhu supports motion to recognize June as month to advance reconciliation efforts with First Nations

(Facebook)
New trial date set for Penticton beach attacker’s triple assault charges

May trial was delayed after Crown witnesses failed to show up

Orange ribbons are tied to the fence outside Vernon’s Gateway Homeless Shelter on 33rd Street. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
POLL: Low-key Canada Day in the works for Vernon

Councillor calling for Indigenous recognition for 2022

A conceptual design of Vernon’s new Active Living Centre, which will go to referendum Oct. 15, 2022. (Rendering)
Active living centre 2022 referendum planned in Vernon

City hoping to get Coldstream and Areas B and C back on board

Closure of the 2900 block of 30th Avenue will allow restaurants and other businesses to extend their patios onto the street. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Green light given to downtown Vernon road closure

Single block of 30th Avenue to close over summer months to boost business

A provided photo of the suspect. (Kelowna RCMP/Contributed)
Kelowna RCMP investigating after business robbed

An undisclosed amount of money and merchandise were taken from the business

Travel Penticton went to city council for support in increasing the tax on short-term stays to fund a convention bureau and affordable housing. (File photo)
Travel Penticton seeks to grow through increased hotel tax

The increased funds would go to creating a convention bureau and to affordable housing

Most Read