Special Events • Food • Staging • Community Parade
CANTON, OHIO (April 26, 2013) – The Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival department of Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Pro Football Hall of Fame have named the following key committee chairs: Joann Smith, Special Events; Karen Myers, Food; Gregory Briggs, Staging; and Bernie Bresson, Community Parade.
Smith, coordinator of student teaching and field experience at Kent State University at Stark, is heading the Hall of Fame Special Events Committee for the tenth year. Prior to this position, she served as chairman of the Enshrinement Festival Souvenir Committee and was a long-time member of the Appreciation Party Committee, and she continues to serve as co-chairman of the Ribs Burnoff judging sub-committee. She shares her musical gifts as a choir member at Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church, and as a singer and secretary of the board of trustees for Voices of Canton. She and husband Fred are the parents of two sons and proud grandparents of two granddaughters.
As Special Events chairman, one of her major tasks will be to coordinate the Hall of Fame Board of Trustees Reception, which is staged as the first official function for the Enshrinees and their presenters, returning Hall of Famers and other out of town guests. Additionally, the Special Events Committee provides services such as emergency medical and dental assistance for guests of the Hall of Fame during their stay in Canton, and the committee is always on call to assist the Enshrinees and their families as needed. Smith will be assisted with these many duties by vice chairman Linda Leitzke.
Myers is a 16-year member of the Food Committee, with this being her second year as chairman, and she brings great expertise to the task via her position as consumer services supervisor for the Canton City Health Department. A graduate of East Canton High School and Kent State University, she has also taken classes at Walsh University. She and husband Les have two children and three grandchildren.
The Food Committee oversees the menu and wine selections and works closely with caterers to ensure the success of the food service to 12,000 guests at the Enshrinement Festival’s Fashion Show Luncheon, Enshrinees’ Gold Jacket Dinner and Enshrinees GameDay Roundtable. Serving as vice chairman of the committee is Dean Kahler.
Briggs is a sub-contractor in the flooring business, which brings a great amount of expertise to his first year as chairman of the Staging Committee, after serving as a volunteer on the committee for the past 14 years. He graduated from Timken High School and attended Stark State College. An Eagle Scout, he is the proud father of one son and one daughter.
The Staging Committee directs the planning, preparation and production of the Queen Pageant, Fashion Show Luncheon, Enshrinees’ Gold Jacket Dinner and Enshrinees GameDay Roundtable. Ben Zampino is assisting Briggs as vice chairman.
Bresson graduated from the former Glenwood High School, is retired from Metal Master Inc., and is a member of Sheet Metal Workers Local 33. He is a nine-year member of the Community Parade Committee, with this being his second as chairman, and he also serves on the Grand Parade Committee as float coordinator. He is a 51-year Grange member and currently serves as president of Israel Lutheran Church and Lutheran Men in Mission Northeastern Ohio Synod, as well as secretary of National Lutheran Men in Mission Board. Previously a 20-year 4H member and advisor, he currently also volunteers for Habitat for Humanity. He and wife Chris, also a Community Parade Committee member, have two daughters and one granddaughter.
The Community Parade is scheduled to kick-off at 2:30 p.m. on July 28, at Eleventh Street and Market Avenue North, and will travel south through the heart of downtown Canton. Bresson will be assisted by vice chairman Carol McLaughlin.
About the Enshrinement Festival
In 2013, the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Enshrinement Festival will mark the 50th anniversary of honoring the legends of professional football, which includes conducting a world-renowned festival celebrating the annual enshrinement of football players, coaches and contributors into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The collaborative efforts of this leadership team, combined with the professional staffs at the Canton Regional Chamber and the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and the dedicated team of more than 4,200 volunteers, will ensure the success of 19 diverse events from July 19 to Aug. 6, 2013.
The Enshrinement Festival activities, attended by nearly 700,000 people, are expected to produce an economic impact of over $32 million for the Canton/Stark County area and $56 million for the State of Ohio. In addition, millions will experience aspects of the Enshrinement Festival as events are televised and covered by other media.
The central focus and highlight of this year’s Enshrinement Festival will be the Aug. 3 Enshrinement Ceremony for the Class of 2013 Enshrinees: Larry Allen, Cris Carter, Curley Culp, Jonathan Ogden, Bill Parcells, Dave Robinson and Warren Sapp.