St. Peter’s Principal Kelvin Colliar named to Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2022
UNIT – The class of inductions into the Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame in 2022 includes St. Peter’s School principal Kelvin Colliar.
Colliar, previously inducted as a member of the North Battleford Junior Beavers team from 1978 to 1980, is recognized in the individual category.
“Baseball has been an important part of my life for as long as I can remember,” Colliar told the Press-Herald/SASKTODAY.ca.
“I grew up in North Battleford and frequented Abbots Field and Beaver Lions Stadium watching the North Battleford Beavers play their home games. My dad, Bob Colliar, coached junior baseball at North Battleford for over 40. At the age of nine, I started serving as the batboy for the team. During that time, I met some of the most interesting characters who became lifelong friends.
Colliar’s baseball career spans decades and includes being bat boy for the North Battleford Junior Beavers in 1971, who won a bronze medal at the Canadian Championships and again in 1974, serving as bat boy. mice for North Battleford’s silver medal at the Canadian Senior Championships.
Colliar’s playing career included a bronze medal with the UCT New Brunswick Junior Beavers at the Canadian Bison Championship; fifth place in the same championship with the same team, bronze medal in Sask. Summer Games, gold medal in Sask. Bison championships, silver medal at the Western Canadians, all with the NB Beavers juniors.
The North Battleford Beavers roster included Colliar from 1982 to 1986.
His playing career evolved into officiating and he was a Sask. A registered baseball umpire since 1985. Colliar estimates he has played more than 2,000 games in the midget, junior and senior leagues. As a Level 5 referee, he was part of numerous Provincial and Western Canadian Championships across the province from 1985 to 2015. He also conducted Level 1 and 2 courses in North West Saskatchewan for a decade from 1996 to 2006.
Colliar was selected to officiate at several national championships, including a 1992 stint in Czechoslovakia and Poland, as well as appearances in 1996, 1996, 1999 and 2000 at various Canadian championships across Canada.
Colliar continued to umpire senior baseball from 1985 to 2022 in the North Saskatchewan River Baseball League.
His CV does not stop there. He coached and managed a bantam team at Spiritwood in 1990, starting from scratch and ending the season winning the Battle River Bantam Baseball League in 1991.
From 2000 to present, Colliar is the League Commissioner of the North Saskatchewan Baseball League.
Every experience from batboy to player to referee to now leadership is part of Colliar’s sports bag full of memories.
“My greatest accomplishment was being selected to serve as a referee at the 1995 Canadian Championships in Waterloo, Ontario. at the National Selects tournament, in 1996 at the Canadian Senior Baseball Championships in Saskatoon, in 1999 at the National Midget Championships in Red Deer Alta. and in 2000 at the National Select Tournament in Stonewall, Man.”
When officiating took Colliar to Czechoslovakia and Poland in 1992, he led officiating clinics and officiated matches between the North Battleford Junior Beavers and the Polish and Czech national teams.
“What a wonderful experience it was…again, the experience was organized by my dad Bob Colliar, a member of the Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame.”
Colliar says keeping baseball alive in the Northwest is what he finds most rewarding.
“While officiating at a provincial, western or national championship can be very rewarding, the most rewarding part of my career as an umpire has been serving in the senior and junior baseball leagues with all players and managers who have kept baseball alive in the Northwest. Saskatchewan.
“It was through my early relationships with these teams that I became interested in the organization and management of the North Saskatchewan River Baseball League. My first support in the role of an organizer is came from Dr. Ian Smith, and [North Battleford] Director of Parks and Recreation Bernie Albers.”
Growing up and living on a ballpark, Collair’s experiences developed a lifelong love of the game.
Several people expressed their feelings about Colliar and his career saying, “The enthusiasm and principles he enlisted in his career as an educator also apply to his role in baseball. His personal reflection on the how rewarding his baseball career has been resonates in his actions, as Colliar likes to create a sense of excitement around baseball so that players, coaches and fans have something to look forward to, he uses his role and experience as an educator as an opportunity to impact the future of baseball in the region and province.”
“For me, there’s no better place to be on a summer evening than on the ball diamond in Saskatchewan. My baseball experience has been enriched by the many people I have met through this great game.”
This group includes his father and the teammates he played with.
“I wasn’t a great baseball player, but nobody ever told me that and everyone accepted me for who I was,” Colliar said.
He also pays tribute to the other referees and organizers.
“I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to the players, coaches, managers and communities of the Northern Saskatchewan Baseball League, who have supported the league over the past 20 years under my leadership. I enjoy and look forward to each and every spring.
Colliar took over the office of principal at St. Peter’s School in 2020. He previously served as superintendent of Light of Christ Catholic Schools from 2007 to 2017, where he entered a brief retirement phase before coming to Unity. Colliar will retire from St. Peter’s in June 2022.