STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY LEADERS GATHER FOR TENNIS COMPLEX DEDICATION
AMERICUS-SUMTER COUNTY COMMUNITY COMES TOGETHER FOR DEDICATION OF NEW TENNIS COMPLEX
The threatening weather passed on Saturday, January 21, 2012, as members of the Americus-Sumter County community met on Oak Avenue to dedicate the newest addition to the sports arena for Sumter County and Sumter County Schools.
The program was opened with an Invocation by Mr. Keith Parks of First Baptist Church. This invocation set the pace for comments of unity and a special celebration of partnership in Americus-Sumter County. Americus-Sumter High South seniors and members of the varsity tennis team, Kendrick and Kentrell Mercer, celebrated the day with a rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner.” Mrs. Angela Westra, President of the Americus-Sumter Chamber of Commerce, returned to the podium to introduce Mr. Barry Blount, Mayor of the City of Americus and Mr. Mark Waddell, representing the Sumter County Commission. Both leaders are graduates of Americus High School. Each representative spoke of the importance of this event and the symbol of unity in Americus and Sumter County. Next on the program were additional accolades for Sumter County Schools and Americus-Sumter High South Principal, Mr. Walter Knighton. Knighton volunteered, “Our theme for this year is to reestablish Panther Pride” and create champions both in academics and athletics. This complex indicates that we have support and pride in our effort.” Superintendent of Sumter County Schools, Dr. Roy Brooks, continued the celebration of partnership and unity of the community. Dr. Brooks, an avid tennis player, said, “We cannot have a world-class school system without world class facilities. I appreciate partnership in our community as we become a world-class school district. Today, we celebrate another day of unity in this community. This facility, built by Parrish Construction, will add additional praise for our sports facilities in Sumter County. All of you had a vital part in the construction of these eight, lighted courts. Visiting teams will envy this facility," said Dr. Brooks.
Mentioned several times during the program was Coach Carl Willis. As he approached to podium, Willis received a standing ovation. He first recognized the many coaches, parents and individuals who had supported the tennis program in past seasons.”Our young people not only excel on the tennis court but also in the classroom. Mr. Knighton has challenged us to run a solid program, both academically and athletically. Our AD, Coach Pollock has also made this same challenge. Student athletes now realize the pride and accolade that comes from excellence in academics and sports,” said Willis.
Prior to the official ribbon cutting for the new complex, Josh Watford and Mallory Pinnell, 2011 ASHS graduates and members of the 1-AAA Region Tennis Champions then unveiled banners that will hang on the walls of the complex.
The 225 guests were then invited to enjoy lunch sponsored by Parrish Construction Company before a Blue & Gold Tennis Game.
Here, representatives of school, government and community stakeholders gather for the ribbon cutting of the new state-of-the art tennis complex.