Banquet will honor athletes
Another talented group of senior athletes will be honored at the 32nd annual Park Rapids All Sports Banquet Wednesday night at the Area High School gym.
The main highlights of the evening will be the announcement of the 2009 Male Student Athlete and Female Student Athlete and the 2009 Outstanding Female Athlete and Outstanding Male Athlete. In addition, Dick Carpenter and Gene Nei will be inducted into the Panther Athletic Hall of Fame.
This year there are 12 boys and seven girls who met the criteria for these awards.
Meeting the criteria for Male Student Athlete are Trevor Matheny, Kyle McBrady, Justin Peterson, Cody Schirmers and Kevin Vaadeland.
The candidates meeting the criteria for the Female Student Athlete honor are Alyssa Klingenberg, Megan Lawrence, Mindy Lawrence, Kayla Stursa and Rachel Thelen.
To be eligible for the Student Athlete award, seniors must have a minimum grade point average of 3.50, be at least a two-sport athlete or a state participant in one sport in grades 10 through 12, and have no confirmed rules violations during their senior year.
Vying for the Outstanding Female Athlete honor are Morgan Kelly, Klingenberg, Megan Law-rence, Mindy Lawrence, Stursa, Thelen and Alexa Zunich-Andersen.
The candidates for the Outstanding Male Athlete are Tom Drury, Bryce Klasen, Matheny, McBrady, Michael McDowell, Devon Ondracek, Peterson, Schirmers, Jacob Swenson, Vaadeland, Dylan Walsh and Derek Werner.
The criteria for the Outstanding Athlete award include being at least a two-sport athlete or a state participant in grades 10 through 12, having no confirmed rules violations during their senior year and making satisfactory progress towards graduation.
Last year's winners were Grant Dierkhising (Male Student Athlete), Heather Tretbar (Female Student Athlete), Zach Lehrke (Outstanding Male Athlete) and Laura Haugland (Outstanding Female Athlete).
Seating for this year's banquet will begin at 5:30 with the banquet starting at 6:15.
Following the meal, Carpenter and Nei will be inducted into the Panther Athletic Hall of Fame. Senior letterwinners will be recognized and Park Rapids Memorial Scholarships and other awards will be presented. After the Parade of Champions and recognition of all state participants from the 2008-09 season, the Male Student Athlete, Female Student Athlete, Outstanding Female Athlete and Outstanding Male Athlete will be announced.
There will also be entertainment by the high school music department. A video presentation showcasing the 2008-09 sports season for all 20 varsity teams will cap off the evening.