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Thursday, June 4, 2015

On Tuesday, January 13, 2004, the City held its first Troy Sports Day at the Troy Community Center, but many of the participants had no idea how much there was to celebrate. It was public knowledge that Troy Sports Day, scheduled to honor all the individuals and organizations that contributed to the successful pursuit of sports in the City, was to include appearances by Lem Barney,former Detroit Lion and NFL Hall of Famer, and Lions Head Coach Steve Mariucci.

What participants did not know, was that the celebration would also include the public announcement that Troy had been selected as the Sports Illustrated 50th Anniversary Sportstown for the state of Michigan.


The prestigious award, presented by Sports Illustrated and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), was accepted by Mayor Matt Pryor and City Manager John Szerlag. Tina Ienna, Troy resident and advertising sales director of Sports Illustrated’s Detroit office, presented the award on behalf of the magazine; Mike Maisner, a NRPA trustee, presented on that organization’s behalf.


Fifty Sports Illustrated Sportstowns – one from each state – were announced between July 2003 and July 2004. The selections were made jointly by Sports Illustrated and the National Recreation and Park Association, based on criteria that demonstrated community involvement in facilitating and enhancing quality sports. Each Sportstown received a cash grant, recognition in Sports Illustrated magazine and online, and a special commemorative road sign, designating the community an official Sports IllustratedSportstown.


Michigan was the 27th state to receive a Sports Illustrated Sportstown designation. The special Michigan section appeared in SI’s February 9, 2004 issue. Troy’s profile was also posted online.


SI President Bruce Hallett explained, “Troy’s commitment to finding creative and resourceful ways to enhance sports for the well being of its community fits perfectly with the principles of our Sportstown program, as well as the overall mission of our anniversary celebration.”


“Troy is clearly committed to inclusion and lifelong sports participation,” said NRPA Executive Director John Thorner. “In establishing and implementing programs for preschoolers, youth, adults, senior citizens and persons with disabilities, as well as by supporting independent sport programs throughout the community, Troy serves as an excellent example of a Sports Illustrated Sportstown.”


To commemorate the City of Troy’s 60th Anniversary in 2015, we will publish a different story each day that highlights a person, discovery, or event that occurred locally, regionally, nationally, or even globally between 1955 and 2015 and that helped shape our lives and our community. We will try to post stories on important anniversary dates, but we also realize that dates are less critical than content and context. We will include the facts related to controversial stories, allowing our readers to form their own opinions. We invite you to read and comment on the stories. Your suggestions for topics are also welcome and can be posted on our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/TroyHistoricVillage. You can also email stories or ideas to the 365 Story Editor at ed@thvmail.org.

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