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One of Thunder Bay's finest all-round athletes, Weikko Koivisto starred with local junior and senior teams from the 1920s to 1940s. Becoming involved in athletics at the age of eight with the Finnish athletic club known as Nahjus, he would receive training in such sports as gymnastics, wrestling, boxing and track and field, going on to learn and excel at many other sports over the years.

Starting his junior hockey career in Port Arthur in 1927, Koivisto proceeded to win at almost every league and level. As a junior player he won back to back local midget championships in 1929 and 1930. At the senior level he was successful in winning 11 city titles, including four in a row with the Port Arthur Bearcats from 1939 to 1943. He would also go on to play in two Allan Cup finals, after becoming the Western Canadian champion in 1942 and 1944.

Described as an intelligent athlete, Koivisto played the key strategic positions in most sports, such as pitcher, catcher, and shortstop in baseball and softball, and quarterback in football. He was a standout baseball player and softball pitcher, becoming a runner-up for two batting titles in 1939 and 1943, and throwing two no-hitters as a pitcher.

His talents also shone in basketball, football, curling, bowling, and horseshoes. As a bowler, Koivisto had a high 5-pin handicap. In addition, he was a member of the Port Arthur Curling Club for ten years, and later joined the Port Arthur Go-Slow Curling League. When it came to horseshoes, Weikko was as good as anyone, becoming the district champion for nine years. He now has a memorial horseshoe tournament named after him.

With an active and successful sports career spanning more than 20 years, Weikko Koivisto remains one of the most talented all-round athletes to ever compete in the Lakehead.

Inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, September 29, 1984

Weikko Koivisto

Port Arthur
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