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INDUCTEE 2012 - ATHLETE - Mark Jackson


 


Introductory Comments by Colleen Grinde


For 39 years, bowling was part of Mark Jackson’s life and for 27 of those years Mark bowled at the highest competitive level afforded in his sport.  For Mark to remain successful in bowling for that length of time it has required him to practice, have a high level of fitness, tremendous drive, focus and dedication, as well as TIME!  It has meant traveling, sometimes great distances, two or three times per week during the bowling season to bowl in a competitive level league.  It has also involved entering up to twenty tournaments per year.  Some of these tournaments require participants to bowl over thirty games per day, a real test of your physical fitness and concentration.  Many bowling tournaments are on  holiday week-ends like Thanksgiving and Mother’s day so it has also meant sacrificing family time.

Mark started out as a youngster and his interest, ability and competitive drive propelled him to his impressive record of successes including qualifying to represent Alberta at 21 different National Championships, winning four Canadian Championships, being named National Tournament All Star three times, winning the TSN Pins Game and garnering the top prize nine times at money tournaments across western Canada.

In his long career, Mark has travelled across Canada, made life –long friends in the bowling community and gained self gratification. Being the intense competitor that he is,  Mark admits he has missed the competition and the camaraderie since retiring from the sport he loves....but, like most athletes, his body gave out before his desire.  Mark feels that if he no longer had to endure the physical efforts required in his day job, he would probably still be bowling....so, once he retires, you never know, bowling might again be part of his life!

            It is really special for me to be introducing Mark tonight as he and I started out together in the Wetaskiwin Youth Bowling Council league when we were in junior high and l, like all of your Wetaskiwin friends and the kids you grew up with, are so proud of your achievements.

            Mark, you have been recognized for your accomplishments by the receiving the City of Edmonton Salute to Excellence Award twice and by being named one of the Century of Excellence Top 100 Male Bowlers by the Canadian 5 Pin Bowlers’ Association. Tonight you are being honored by your home community for the passion you have for your sport, your ability to remain competitive for so many years and your innumerable successes.  It is with pleasure that we induct you into the Wetaskiwin and County Sports Hall of Fame.

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