CPS Celebrates Rich Athletic History

The 2018 Cincinnati Public Schools Athletic Hall of Fame event is taking place on April 19, 2018.

The 2018 CPS Hall of Fame is taking place on April 19, 2018.

Working jointly with the Cincinnati Public School District (CPS), Activities Beyond the Classroom has played a big role in honoring the distinguished local athletes who have made a name for themselves over the years. To that end, on April 19 CPS will celebrate its rich athletic history by recognizing fourteen athletes and coaches as part of the 2018 Athletic Hall of Fame Class. These honorees are culled from sports as diverse as football, basketball, swimming, and tennis, and span the generational gamut, with the oldest member belonging to the Class of 1946, while the youngest comes from the Class of 2000.

“The Cincinnati Public Schools Athletic Hall of Fame has a special Selection Committee who assumes the responsibility of voting on all nominations on a year-by-year basis. Each Selection Committee member either represents a CPS school as an alum or has a demonstrated history and knowledge of high school athletics within the Cincinnati area,” says Josh Hardin, District Athletic Manager for CPS. “After detailed nomination forms are shared, each member will select who they believe deserves a bid. The athletes/coaches with the most votes at the end of the meeting being selected. All nominees are screened by the Executive Committee.” Each year, eight living athletes, two coaches, and four deceased athletes are selected to be inducted into the CPS Hall of Fame.

Living honorees include former athletes, including Denny Duermit (Withrow class of 1969, basketball), Andre Frazier (Hughes class of 2000, football and basketball), Glynn Johnson (Walnut Hills class of 1996, football and track & field), Jennifer Johnston Lamont (Walnut Hills class of 1982, swimming), Chip Jones (Woodward class of 1988, basketball), Al Lanier (Hughes class of 1969, football, basketball and track & field), Roland West (Withrow class of 1962, basketball), and Mary Danner Wineberg (Walnut Hills class of 1998, OLY track & field) plus coaches Tom Chambers (Withrow 1966-99 & 2005-08, baseball) and John Young (Aiken, 1977-85, football). There are also several posthumous entries, including Dwayne Berry (Aiken class of 1975, football and basketball), Denny Dase (Central Vocational class of 1959, football and track & field), Robert Fagin (Western Hills class of 1946, diving & swimming), Pat Groeniger (Western Hills class of 1946, cross country and track & field) and the honorary selection of A. Chris Nelms, CPS Board Member.

“Cincinnati Public Schools has an incredibly rich history in regard to culture, academics, and athletics. Students and coaches that contributed to success and transformation of athletics in any and all capacities deserve to be recognized and CPS Athletics takes tremendous pride in inviting these model citizens back to the district,” says Hardin. “Current students can look up to these former athletes/coaches knowing that they were once in similar situations and circumstances. We believe it is very important for successful CPS alumni to remain involved with the district as mentors and liaisons, as well as motivators in order to grow the youth of today.”

The induction ceremony will be held at Paul Brown Stadium, with popular sports broadcasters John Popovich and Lincoln Ware acting as hosts. It’s worth mentioning that the event is open to the public, with tickets costing just $40, purchasable both online through ABC’s website and by phone at 513-281-9870. Tables of eight can also be reserved, at the cost of $320 each. There is no special pricing for children or seniors.

Those who wish to come may be interested to know that the event kicks off at 5 p.m. with a special social hour, during which old friends and colleagues can reunite and reminisce about the good times spent together. Then, at 6 p.m. the banquet is scheduled to start, lasting for one full hour before the commencement of the induction ceremony itself. As with all Hall of Fame-type events, expect plenty of genuine emotion, gratefulness and maybe even a few tears as Cincinnati’s finest receive public appraisals for their accomplishments.

Regardless of which teams you follow or what sports you enjoy the most, all students and mentors who excel in the field of athletics deserve recognition. Their efforts are an inspiration to current and future generations, so it makes sense for a nonprofit as dedicated to extracurricular activities as ABC to endorse and support such initiatives. This makes the 2018 CPS Hall of Fame ceremony a must-attend event for anyone interested in Cincinnati sports, and a harbinger of more good things to come out of this organization.

Seeking to expand students’ horizons is always a noble pursuit, and few organizations have done more in this regard than Activities Beyond the Classroom, a nonprofit company based in Cincinnati. From setting up field trips to offering out grants, ABC has been a worthy ally to any student who wishes to make the most of his or her youth. In fact, an estimated 15,000 public school students get to participate in one or more of the 200 extracurricular programs and activities organized by ABC every year.