Inductees Dennison, owner of Crossroad Lanes since 1958, has touched every bowling base in his long career, from bowling in 41 ABC tournaments (beginning with the 1934 tournament held here) to winning tournaments throughout the Midwest to being almost a charter member of the Professional Bowlers Association.
You name an Illinois town and Dennison has won a bowling tournament there: Peoria, Bloomington, LaSalle, Streator, Decatur, Springfield, Pekin, Sterling, Rock Island, Muscatine and Davenport, Iowa, the list is almost endless.
He averaged 194 for over 20 years of league bowling, has a high three-game series of 746 and bowling on one of Peoria's most memorable teams, the Clover Club, where he joined Fred and Harry Thoma, Elmer Holzinger and Eddie Gramlich for three-game totals of 3235, 3202, 3060 and 3130 between March 3 and March 19 in 1948.
And on the night the Sun Ripe Juice team recorded the highest single game, 1215, in the history of the Peoria Bowling Association, Dennison led the way with a 279.
As a Navy flight instructor in 1945, he won a trip to the All-Star tournament in Chicago as the Iowa match game champion and the following year made the All-Star finals in Oklahoma.
And he's still winning tournaments. With Bob Sommer he has bagged an ABC tournament seniors double title and three times has won the Illinois Seniors championship in doubles and all-events.
Dennison, owner of Crossroad Lanes since 1958, has touched every bowling base in his long career, from bowling in 41 ABC tournaments (beginning with the 1934 tournament held here) to winning tournaments throughout the Midwest to being almost a charter member of the Professional Bowlers Association.
Neve Harms Award
The Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame Neve Harms Award, formerly the Peoria Advertising and Selling Club's Annual Meritorious Service to Sports Award, was named the Neve Harms Award in 1966 and for a very good reason.
As Director of Proctor Recreation Center, Harms observed the need for all youths to experience participation in sports activities, and not just the few who excelled. He, therefore, adopted a firm policy which assured that all youths would have an opportunity to play in games of the various sports controlled by Proctor Center. This plan met with much success and certainly with acceptance by parents whose children became more interested in sport activities at Proctor and consequently made good use of their free time.
Neve carried through this policy when he was appointed Superintendent of the Peoria City Recreation Department which later became part of the Peoria Park District. In addition, he also developed a system of recognition for all youths so that each young person could feel good about his or her efforts.
This kind of interest in all youths regardless of ability came from a most competitive and outstanding athlete. Neve was a four-sport player at Manual High School and a three-sport letter winner at Bradley University. He was a member of the 1929 Manual High School State Championship Basketball team.
Awards prior to 1981 were offered through the Peoria Advertising Club, rather than the Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame. We don't have biographies for these individuals. If anyone would be able to provide the bios that were written by the club at the time of the awards, we would very much appreciate receiving them for posting. We are also missing the Bruce Saurs' bio that was written in the 1991 Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame Banquet book, and we would like to receive it also. We are specifically interested in the bios written at the time of the awards, not more or less current. Please contact Rick at email@example.com.
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The Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame celebrates the rich sports heritage of Peoria, Tazewell and Woodford counties. We will promote and encourage the many varied sports programs in our area, share our pride and honor the accomplishments of the individuals, teams and organizations that contribute to our enjoyment and area sports history.
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