Anglican Track Meet to honor veteran educator

The Anglican churches of the Northern Archdeaconry will hold their 4th Annual Track & Field meet this coming Saturday, October 4 at the Grand Bahama Sports Complex. 

The 10 parishes which comprise the archdeaconry include congregations from Abaco, Bimini and the seven churches in Grand Bahama.

The meet is designed to maximize the participation of all members of the parish and events are scheduled for competitors ranging from preschool age to persons who are considered young-at-heart and are in their 50s, 60s and even older. Additionally, there are “fun” events planned which include the traditional “egg and spoon” and three-legged races. 

Events for “co-ed” or mixed teams are also on the line-up; members of the Vestry will have their exclusive category and of course, there is the ever popular Clergy race which tends to be more entertaining than any of the other specialty events.

But female clergy will not have to feel disadvantaged, as a “handicap” is factored in for the ladies as well as for the more “seasoned” clergy who may feel that the young Turks may hold a strategic advantage. 

This meet also serves as a tune-up for those high school athletes and other senior competitors who attend Anglican churches so there will also be some extremely competitive running and jumping by the more developed and disciplined participants. Relays are always the highlight of any track meet and this one will be no different. In addition to the traditional 4x100m and 4x400m races in all age groups, a number of variations in the traditional line-up will also be featured.

And if you are a fitness buff and not a traditional track and field athlete, there is something for you as well, as events are planned for the walkers among us. 

And yes! You guessed it! Those who prefer to walk rather than run will also have their own relays as well. There is virtually no area that has been left out when it comes to athletics or physical fitness that the Anglican Sports Council did not cover.

The meet this year is being held in honour of Dr. Cecil Thompson who is a career educator, a fixture in the Freeport community and a lifelong member the Anglican Church. 

He has impacted the lives of literally thousands of students here on the island, most of whom will remember him from the Hawksbill High School, or wherever he served in the educational system. Hawksbill High at the time was the largest educational institution in the country, and was a standout institution in the areas of academics, athletics and the performing arts. 

He is credited with being the brain-thrust behind the formation and institution of the marching band at Hawksbill High School which is itself the forerunner of the St. Georges’ and Sir Jack Hayward High School bands. 

His achievements and accomplishments in the field of education are many and so is his involvement at his church. Having served in the capacity of the Sunday School Superintendent and a member of the Vestry, he continues as a Lay Minister at the Pro-Cathedral of Christ the King, serving in whichever capacity he is called upon to assist. 

As the Under Secretary in the Ministry for Grand Bahama, he had opportunity to continue his youth and community work, as he is always called upon to organize events and parades surrounding the national observances such as Youth Month in October and the involvement of our young people in the annual Independence observances.

The Annual Anglican Track and Field Classic is also used as the official selection process for the team that will represent this area of the diocese at the track meet in New Providence later this year when the four archdeaconry teams will compete for supremacy and bragging rights. The team from the Northern Archdeaconry are the defending champions.

The entire community, but especially Anglicans are encouraged to make their way to the Grand Bahama Sports complex on Saturday to witness this annual clash of parishes in friendly competition and those who feel that they are not athletically inclined and can only compete by “running” their mouths; “jumping” to conclusions, or “throwing” a fit, there is a spot for you as well and you can sit in the stands and cheer on your favourite athlete or church. 


Published  Friday, October 3, 2014 


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