A fine career in athletics in his youth, which saw him twice chosen his high school’s Male Athlete of the Year, proved to be only the start for Windsor native Mike Trinacty.
Mike’s dad, a coach, baseball and softball umpire and hockey referee, was his mentor and inspiration as a youth, and started Mike refereeing and umpiring at age 14.
He started his coaching career at age 15, when he had a summer job teaching minor baseball four nights a week. That same year, he helped coach a minor hockey team.
By the time he graduated from Acadia in 1980 with a degree in Recreation, he had coached every level of hockey from novice to Junior C.
In 1979 Dale Lloyd was Chairman of Recreation for Berwick, potential for development of sport was huge and so ready. Convincing Council to hire Recreation Director was the “right thing to do”, Mike Trinacty was hired in 1981. What followed was tremendous growth in sports and recreation programs! Bill Spurr the provincial regional representative for sport and recreation of the day said it best, “You hired the right guy”.
The following year, 1982, he set up a Men’s Slo-Pitch league (with 12 teams) and a ladies’ league (with four teams). In 1983, he established men’s (six teams) and ladies’ (four teams) ball hockey leagues. He continued to manage all four leagues until 1988.
Mike started minor baseball in Berwick, coaching a bantam team in 1983, and also coached the Berwick Junior High hockey team in 1982 and 1983 and the Berwick peewee hockey team in 1983.
He also organized a men’s fall soccer league, an annual Berwick gentleman’s hockey tournament which ran 12 years (1983-1995), and the Apple Blossom fastball tournament (1984-1988).
Mike also established the Berwick fastball league in 1985 with five teams, including the Berwick Eassons, with whom he was player-coach from 1986-1988. In 1987-1988, he coordinated the Valley Fastball League.
In the fall of 1987 leading up to the 1988 Winter Olympics Mike coordinated the Valley Torch Run, an event that featured local people running from Annapolis Royal connecting with the national Olympic Torch Run in Bedford. There were community celebrations in every town along the way.
From 1991-1993, he was president of Berwick Minor Baseball, during which time he supervised the building of the Brown Street field, set up a rookie league and coached a mosquito team.
As president of Berwick Gala Days from 1990 to 1995, Mike established the Gala Day Strongman competition, after 22 years it is the longest running event of its kind in the Maritimes. This competition has featured many national caliber athletes.
By the mid-1990s, Mike’s daughters, Melanie and Jill, were growing up. In 1996 and 1997, he coached the atom hockey teams his daughters played on.
In 1998, he started the first female hockey team in Berwick with Peter Connell, and coached six more years at the bantam and midget level, winning one provincial championship, finishing second twice and third once.
In 1999, Mike was instrumental in the launching of the Berwick Sports Hall of Fame, and has served every year as its chair. He was part of the Nova Scotia mission staff for the 2001 and 2005 Canada Summer Games.
Starting in 2000, he was part of the committee that planned the Kings Mutual Century Centre, chairing the proponent committee and the building committee.
He was involved in Berwick’s NHL fundraiser alumni games in 1984, 2012, 2013 and 2014, both as a player and as a member of the organizing committee.
Mike has also impacted the athletic and recreation life of Berwick, and of the entire Valley region, as Regional Representative for the provincial Department of Health and Wellness. He also served several terms on Berwick Town Council.
Few Berwick residents have impacted the life of the town more, and for a longer time, than Mike Trinacty. We are extremely pleased to induct him into the Berwick Sports Hall of Fame, in the builder category.