79th Gold Key banquet has been postponed until May 2021

The 79th annual Gold Key dinner and banquet has been postponed until Sunday, May 2, 2021, at the Aqua Turf restaurant in the Plantsville section of Southington due to continued concerns about safety and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Officials in the Connecticut Sports Writers Alliance (CWSA) had hoped they the banquet could have been held on October 18 but while the state has done well in trying to contain the virus, circumstances have not improved enough to hold the banquet this fall.

First celebrated in 1940, the Gold Key Dinner honors Connecticut sportspersons of the past and present. The Gold Key itself, one of the most prestigious athletic awards in the state, is presented to athletes, coaches and administrators who have made longstanding, significant contributions to Connecticut's rich athletic heritage.

Tickets to the Gold Key dinner are $75 apiece, and may be reserved by contacting CSWA President Tim Jensen of Patch Media Corp. at tim.jensen@patch.com. Proceeds from the event benefit the Bo Kolinsky Memorial Sports Journalism Scholarship, named after a longtime Hartford Courant sportswriter and past CSWA president who died unexpectedly in 2003.

Gold Key Award recipients will be five legendary scholastic coaches: Cookie Bromage (Enfield field hockey), Joe Grippo (Morgan girls volleyball and girls basketball), Lou Milardo (Hale-Ray softball), Ricky Shook (Danbury wrestling) and Angela Tammaro (Greenwich Academy field hockey and lacrosse).

The Gold Key is presented to athletes, coaches and administrators who have made noteworthy contributions to Connecticut's rich athletic heritage.

Baseball Hall of Fame honoree Claire Smith, 2017 recipient of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award, will receive the President’s Award.

Other award winners who will be recognized at the banquet include:

  • Hank O’Donnell Female Athlete of the Year: Jonquel Jones, Connecticut Sun

  • Bill Lee Male Athlete of the Year: Alfonso Vazquez Villar, Windham High

  • Doc McInerney High School Coaches of the Year: Bobby Pattison, Newtown football and Kitty Palmer, Guilford field hockey

  • John Wentworth Good Sport Awards: Ben Aleks, Somers; Paul Duddy, Mystic; Steve Krevisky, Middletown; Bill O’Brien, Stratford; Bill Santillo, New Haven

  • Hal Levy High School Recognition Award: Dave Johnson, Monroe

  • Bob Casey Courage Award: Caden Gesualdi, Ellington High

  • Bo Kolinsky Special Recognition Award: Elizabeth Fry, Westport

  • Bo Kolinsky Memorial Sports Journalism Scholarship: Johanna “Hanny” Wolkoff, Farmington

The only scheduled addition to these awards is expected to be the 2021 Bo Kolinsky Memorial Sports Journalism Scholarship award winner.

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