A local family-owned bar would soon be housing the portraits of the 17 members of the CNMI Sports Hall of Fame and other memorabilia that has been a significant part of the Commonwealth’s various sports programs.
Naked Fish Bar and Grill is planning to have one wall inside the establishment dedicated to posting the pictures of these sports heroes.
Restaurant general manager Patrick C. Guerrero said he and his brother Joe Guerrero, who owns the bar along with his wife, first thought of an idea of having photos of the winning anglers that join various events of the Saipan Fisherman’s Association and their prized catch.
“I’ve spoken to SFA since this is Naked Fish, but you don’t see a lot of fish here,” said Guerrero with a laugh. “They don’t really have a home. They also have a perpetual trophy but it is not usually seen unless you work at the Marianas Visitors Authority.”
He added that he and Joe thought it would be cool to see photos of past winners of the tournament with the winning catch, and other artworks that celebrate sport fishing hanging inside the walls of their establishment.
“Sometimes my brother and I just talk and exchange ideas. That’s why we came up with the idea of having SFA items here. But we thought about it, why not extend it to local sports. The first thing that entered our minds was the CNMI Sports Hall of Famers.”
Guerrero said he decided to get in touch with Northern Marianas Sports Association president Mike White to discuss the idea and to know who are the other people that want to work with them with the project.
He added that seeing CNMI Sports Hall of Fame members would be an inspiration to the next generation of athletes to persevere and train harder in order to become successful in their chosen field.
“We just want to the community to see these sports greats that are maybe their brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts or uncles, and remember what they have done to the community,” said Guerrero.
“The Hall of Fame wall will be prominent so everyone can see the members of the CNMI Hall of Fame. We felt that we can connect more to the community if they see the photos of our local sports heroes.”
Seventeen people have already been enshrined into the CNMI Sports Hall of Fame since it was created in 2003 through House Bill 13-113 co-authored by Reps. Daniel O. Quitugua, Ramon A. Tebuteb, and Joseph P. Deleon Guerrero.
Bill and Jean Sakovich, Tony Rogolifoi, Mike Villlagomez, Tony Satur, Francisco “Tan Ko” Palacios, Kurt Barnes, Cecilia Lisua, Jose Tenorio Sablan, Ricardo Duenas, Antonio Benavente, Frank Castro, Jeff Race, Tino Olopai, Jess Wabol, and posthumous awardee Irene Alpet are the current members of the CNMI Hall of Fame.