Walk of Champions honors NSHS past, helps the future
by David Broyles Staff Reporter
The North Surry Greyhound Foundation is hoping to further serve its goal of “bridging the gap” to support education at North Surry High School with an ongoing fundraiser called the Walk of Champions.
The 95-foot by 30-foot area (including the concrete sidewalks which frame the Walk of Champions path) has taken about a year from planning until its unveiling this Friday before the Greyhound’s game against Ashe County in Charles Atkins Stadium.
“We have been able to make it happen,” said Foundation President Sam Holder. “The rain hasn’t killed us. A dozen different companies have stepped up and helped us to make this come about.”
Holder explained the walkway, which is accented by the Greyhound mascot symbol set in granite in the center of the area, is composed pf more than 6,000 brick pavers, four-inch by eight-inch bricks, which can be embossed with alumni names and honors. He said the cost of personalizing the smaller bricks is $40 and $80 for the eight-inch by eight-inch ones through Aug. 23 as a “kickoff special.”
He said the foundation began in 2004 when a group of alumni who wanted to help fund projects at the school which were in a gap because of other budgetary priorities. Most projects completed by the foundation have been capital improvements such as new scoreboards and goal posts, a new weight room and concession stand, safety pads in the school gymnasium, new baseball dugouts and lighting for the softball field. Holder said the group also funds scholarships.
“This is a way for anyone who loves North Surry to leave their mark on this campus. It is a way to make a statement about their time here. It also will dress up the entrance to the stadium,” Holder said. “The Walk of Champions can be how the foundation will fund its next round of projects North Surry will need. This is an example of Greyhound pride being fostered. I love this school.” He said a lot of local companies had helped with the project, many of which had ties to the school.
As of this week the first shipment of personalized tribute bricks had been delivered to the site at the stadium and the initial placement of the bricks is half completed. Once laid and pressed into place, sand will be brushed between any spaces between bricks. The unveiling will coincide with this Friday’s North Surry Greyhound Fan Fest.
“It (the project) is impressive,” said North Surry Principal Neil Atkins. “The Walk of Champions is an outstanding example of what can happen when a school and a community are united. It is something future generations can see and have a lot of pride in.”
Holder said he hopes alumni will choose to highlight class, academic and athletic accomplishments on the bricks so “the accomplishments of all NSHS students are honored.” He said he had already seen a variety of accomplishments on the first bricks with one former student purchasing a brick to honor faculty members.
Persons interested in finding out more about the Walk of Champions or purchasing a brick my contact Holder at 336-325-8130 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reach David Broyles at email@example.com or 719-1952.
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