Sports

New PCHS Athletic Hall of Fame will honor area’s sports history

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GUILFORD — Players, coaches, teams and individuals who have made significant contributions to the Piscataquis Community High School athletic program and/or past educational institutions in towns that today are part of SAD 4 will have the opportunity to be honored in the newly-formed PCHS Athletic Hall of Fame.

“(Athletic Director Joe Gallant) and I were talking about bringing more enthusiasm and excitement to the athletic program,” PCHS Principal John Keane said. “The program is already great and we talked about what can make it even better.”

“Hopefully it will bring some excitement to the athletic program here and augment what we have going,” he added.

Keane said the idea of creating an athletic hall of fame was discussed and developed, and the institution was formally approved by the school board last month. He said the timing is right “because with the high school you never know what the future will be” and the hall of fame will remain even if PCHS were to change from its current form through consolidation or closure.

“There is such a rich history here, it would be said to see that go,” Keane said. “We want to continue this if even if we lose the high school or it moves.”

Discussions took place with various community members and an organizational committee was formed to develop guidelines and bylaws, which are posted at http://www.sad4.org/pchs/athletics along with hall of fame nomination forms. In addition to Keane and Gallant, the group was made up of Andy Lovell, Trisha Moulton, Tom Riitano, Brian Gaw, David Gaw, Cindy Hoak, Paul Stearns and Cindy Woodworth.

“Our plan is to solicit the community for nominations,” Keane said about the inaugural PCHS Athletic Hall of Fame class. He said in addition to the forms on the high school athletic page, the papers are also at the six SAD 4 member town offices, the main office at PCHS and at various businesses through the district.

Completed forms would be due in June when the selection committee — made up of many of the organizers along with others coming onboard — starts to meet and go through the names. Keane said the hall of fame classes may total between five and 10 members, and ideally the first group of inductees would be closer to 10 individuals.

“Our timeline is to select in June and announced at Riverfest,” he said. The festival on the last Saturday of July would include a PCHS Athletic Hall of Fame booth with forms for 2019 available.

“We would like to design a banner and invite those hall of fame people to be in the parade at Riverfest,” the principal said.

“The plan is we would wait until Homecoming and have a hall of fame ceremony,” Keane said. He said a dinner on the evening opposite the student dance would honor the first class, with each class member given the opportunity to provide some remarks.

“Herring Brothers is going to be our corporate sponsor, they are talking on the decision-making of what we are going to have for a hall,” Keane said about the design of the space to honor the past. Plans are in the initial stages but those involved have looked at other high school halls of fame for ideas on what could be located at PCHS.

“When we heard about it, it was something we wanted to be involved with,” Trey Gilbert of Herring Brothers Meats, who is the PCHS boys soccer head coach, said. “We have always been involved, my grandfather (Mac Herring) played basketball in the 1940s. From there my parents played, I played and my kids play.”

“When you came to us we wanted to jump on board and support that,” Gilbert said to Keane.

“The committee really wanted to not be exclusive in any way,” Keane said, saying the PCHS Athletic Hall of Fame will be open to those who have connections to previous educational institutions in Guilford, Sangerville or elsewhere prior to the formation of PCHS.

“It should be a fairly great conversation at the selection committee meeting,” Keane said, as members will discuss the various nominees. He said nominations will be held for five years if not selected in the initial year, and the four categories are athlete, coach, team and contributor.

Keane said nominees will have needed to have graduated from PCHS at least five years prior when applicable.

In addition to the guidelines/bylaws and nomination forms being available at http://www.sad4.org/pchs/athletics, inquiries about the hall of fame can be made to any organizational committee member or by calling 876-4625 ext. 3001 and leaving a message.

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
PCHS ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME — Players, coaches, teams and individuals who have made significant contributions to the Piscataquis Community High School athletics programs and past educational institutions in towns that today are part of SAD 4 will have the opportunity to be honored in the newly-formed PCHS Athletic Hall of Fame. Nominations forms and guidelines are available at http://www.sad4.org/pchs/athletics. Pictured is the trophy case in the lobby of the school in Guilford.

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