by Doug Ireland
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video might be worth 10,000.
Case in point – click on the video below to get a look at the food, fun and frolic that everyone involved will enjoy at lunchtime Friday, June 24 in Alexandria, in the only out-of-Natchitoches event during the three-day Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame 2022 Induction Celebration.
The LSHOF’s big party starts Thursday evening, June 23 with the La Capitol Federal Credit Union Welcome Reception, free to all from 5-7 at the LSHOF Museum on the Front Street traffic circle in downtown Natchitoches.
Then Friday, the scene shifts to Alexandria and Four Seasons Bowling Center for the Class of 2022 BOM Bowling Bash. To enter or get more information visit LaSportsHall.com and click on the Induction Week button, or call 318-238-4255.
The bowling will begin at 11:30 a.m. with lunch for everyone in the house – bowlers and spectators. That’s right – you don’t have to bowl to enjoy the party. Admission is $50 for adults and $25 for youth to mingle, eat, and watch the action.
Bowlers can enter as individuals ($100) or as a team ($400). Teams can be four people paired with a celebrity, or five friends playing without a celebrity.
The headliners on the lanes Friday will be the Class of 2022 LSHOF inductees, led by a pair of six-time Pro Bowl NFL linemen, New Orleans Saints’ offensive guard Jahri Evans and Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams, among a star-studded group of nine 2022 competitive ballot inductees.
The LSHOF Class of 2022 also includes two of the greatest women athletes in LSU history, three-time national champion gymnast Susan Jackson and two-time first-team All-America softball pitcher Britni Sneed Newman. Williams, who helped the Tigers’ football team win the 2003 national championship, is joined by another of LSU’s all-time great linemen, the late Eric Andolsek, and pro rodeo great Steve Duhon, an Opelousas native, among the 2022 inductees.
Baton Rouge-Episcopal High School track and field/cross country coach Claney Duplechin enters the Hall still active, with his teams capturing an astounding 64 LHSAA crowns in his career. Also to be inducted: the late Tony Robichaux, No. 1 on the wins list for state college baseball coaches at McNeese and UL Lafayette, Rounding out the Class of 2022 is the late Dr. Eddie Flynn, who as a Loyola-New Orleans student won the 1932 Olympic welterweight boxing gold medal for the USA, the last gold medal for an American boxer for 20 years.
Inducted as winners of the LSWA’s Distinguished Service Award in Sports Journalism will be acclaimed north Louisiana writer, author and broadcaster Teddy Allen and central Louisiana writer, editor and publisher Garland Forman, a longtime Bunkie resident. Getting the Dave Dixon Louisiana Sports Leadership Award is Shreveport native Jay Cicero, the veteran CEO and president of the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation.
Among the other celebrities will be previously inducted Hall of Famers and Louisiana sports stars, including many who may ultimately be inducted in future years. You’ll probably see some Hall of Famers from around Cenla and others who you might have only seen on TV. This event allows you to meet them, and enjoy visiting with them.
The five-person teams warm up and play a 10-frame game, with the top team winning prizes. The top five individual bowlers and top five celebrities will have playoffs. The bowling party will wrap up about 2 o’clock, in plenty of time for everyone to make it back to Natchitoches for that evening’s free Rockin’ River Fest starting at 6 on the downtown riverbank stage.
One of the most festive events of the Induction Celebration, the BOM Bowling Bash is an event fit for the avid bowlers or those who just like to have fun. It’s Cenla’s own – and there’s time for you and yours to get set for some incredible memories.