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Sandie Bellows recognized for contributions to Canada Games at Walker Sports and Abilities Centre

Sandie Bellows recognized for contributions to Canada Games at Walker Sports and Abilities Centre

Sandie Bellows recognized for contributions to Canada Games at Walker Sports and Abilities Centre

In a private ceremony held Aug. 24, a plaque honouring Sandie Bellows was unveiled at the Walker Sports and Abilities Centre at Canada Games Park.

Sandie Bellows’ sons Colton, left, and Spencer, right, stand outside of The Sandie Bellows Family and Universal Changeroom at the Walker Sports and Abilities Centre at Canada Games Park.

The event, attended by Sandie’s sons Spencer and Colton, St. Catharines Mayor Walter Sendzik, Regional Chair Jim Bradley, along with other City and Niagara Region officials, saw the unveiling of a plaque for the Sandie Bellows Universal and Family Changeroom. The room will be a hub of activity at the centre, which consists of two ice pads, a para sport gymnasium with four courts, a health and wellbeing centre and a 200m indoor track, as well as beach volleyball courts, athletics facility including a track, and more outdoors.

“Sandie was hardworking, caring and a genuine team player, and having her name on a plaque at Canada Games Park is a fitting tribute given her hard work over the years to help bring the Games to Niagara,” said Mayor Walter Sendzik, who helped coordinate the recognition in Sandie’s honour. “A universal changeroom promotes inclusivity for people with disabilities, families with young children and the transgender and non-binary community. That embodies Sandie’s spirit to make our community more inclusive.”

Bellows passed away on October 11, 2021, following a battle with cancer. She spent one term on St. Catharines Council, representing the Grantham ward from 2014-2018, and was elected as a St. Catharines Regional Councillor in the 2018 municipal election. In addition to her advocacy for victim’s rights, she was very active in the community with Niagara Grape and Wine Festival, Crime Stoppers of Niagara, St. Catharines Minor Hockey, and the Niagara Parks Commission, where she was board chair until her passing. She was also an active member of the Canada Summer Games board, helping advocate for the Games in the early stages, and planning after Niagara was awarded the bid.

“Sandie was an important part of the Games, and this is one of her legacies. She quietly played a leading role in tenaciously advocating for support from the upper levels of government,” said Mayor Sendzik. “She was a true champion for Niagara in so many different ways, including the Canada Summer Games, leading with passion and integrity.”