Walnut Ridge HS unveils new gymnasium named after longtime superintendent

Walnut Ridge HS unveils new gymnasium, named after longtime superintendent

WALNUT RIDGE, Ark. (KAIT) - Superintendent Terry Belcher has served in the Walnut Ridge School District for close to 50 years as a coach and a faculty member.

On Wednesday night, a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new high school gym was held. Its name: the Terry Belcher High School Gymnasium.

The unannounced honor took Belcher by surprise.

“I couldn’t believe that they did that for me,” he said.

There were many options for the name of the new gym, but Belcher said he left the decision up to the school board. In fact, he thought the gym was just going to be called the Walnut Ridge High School Gymnasium, but the board decided instead to honor the longtime superintendent.

“I’ve had kids for 44 years, had the girls basketball team in the 70s and 80s which laid the foundation and had the community support all these years," Belcher said. "I couldn’t be more honored.”

According to Belcher, a new gym had been in the works since the mid-2000s, but the cost was too high. After a near-3 mill increase two years ago, the planning for the new gym as well as a baseball and softball facility began.

Last July, they finally broke ground.

“[These facilities] give us a showcase they can be proud of," Belcher said. "The voters just came together and helped do a millage to get it. They knew we needed it. It’s just great for our community and our kids and our future here.”

Belcher says he’s excited about the gym being open and is looking forward to seeing the Bobcats play at the Terry Belcher High School Gymnasium this season.

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