The West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission is forging ahead with plans to commemorate the 100th boys high school basketball state tournament in March.
Special banquet speakers for the 100th tourney will be announced at a press conference Jan. 10 at the Charleston Civic Center Coliseum.
The speakers will help kick off the tournament celebration at an open-to-the-public banquet on Tuesday, March 12 at the Civic Center, the site of the March 13-16 tournament.
“We plan to have speakers who have participated as players and/or coaches in previous tournaments and possibly videos from other tournament players,” said Gary Ray, the executive director of the WVSSAC.
Besides the WVSSAC, the press conference will also feature announcements from representatives of the Charleston Convention and Business Bureau and the Civic Center.
Banquet attendees will be given a limited-edition 100th tournament souvenir program, which will include team photos of most, if not all, of the 229 past state champions as well as lists of all championship coaches, all-tournament teams, tournament trivia, feature stories and many statistical lists and photos.
Special guests will also be recognized at the banquet, with Fred Persinger, of MetroNews, serving as toastmaster. Advance banquet tickets are available from the SSAC.
A 100th tournament logo will be unveiled and used on the Civic Center Coliseum court and elsewhere in the facility as well as on programs, event publicity, shirts and other tournament materials.
Also, state tournament memorabilia will be featured in the lobby areas at the Civic Center as follows: Class A on March 13, Class AA on March 14, and Class AAA on March 15. All schools who have participated in a state tournament can display items, with contributions welcome from schools, coaches, alumni or community members.
Ray Londeree, one of the SSAC’s assistant executive directors, heads the memorabilia committee. Information is available on the 100th Year login on www.wvssac.org.