Tag Archives: Clark Track

Berry parents Rick and Barbara Gaby have committed $300,000 in matching funds to encourage gifts supporting the renovation of Ford Auditorium into a first-class recital hall. These funds will provide a dollar-for-dollar match for new commitments by others, doubling the impact of such gifts. Similar matching programs have been successful in generating support for Gate of Opportunity Scholarships, Clark Track and, most recently, the new theatre under construction at Blackstone Hall.

The $4.9 million renovation of Ford Auditorium will breathe new life into Berry’s signature venue for music performance. Planned enhancements include an enlarged stage; 366 seats in an arched configuration; a redesigned balcony; high-performance acoustics; digital lighting and sound systems; climate-controlled instrument storage; a renovated foyer and lobby; and restoration of historic architectural elements.

Contact Scott Breithaupt at 706-238-5897 or sbreithaupt@berry.edu for more information on the matching program. Many naming opportunities are available. To make an online gift, click www.berry.edu/gift and select “Ford Auditorium renovation” from the “Campaign Priorities” menu.

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Berry Track and Field Team

Full competition in track and field will return to the Berry campus for the first time in decades March 5 when the Vikings welcome teams from Sewanee, Piedmont, Meredith, Millsaps, Oglethorpe, Union (Ky.), Reinhardt and Clark Atlanta for the Ice-Breaker Duals.

Limited to distance running only since the 1980s, Berry’s track and field program has been expanded this year to include competition in sprints, hurdles, jumps and throws. This was made possible by the 2015 completion of the Valhalla stadium complex including Clark Track and the Dickey Field throws area.

Berry Coach Luke SyversonThe newly expanded team is headed by coach Luke Syverson, who came to Berry in 2015 after five years as an assistant track and field coach at Lipscomb University, an NCAA Division I institution in Nashville. Assisting him in the various event groups are Paul Deaton (91C), Berry’s longtime cross country and distance running coach, Neal West, Ossie Buchannon, Zack Smith and Shannon Riley.

“One of the greatest parts of coaching is seeing growth take place in all areas of a student-athlete’s life, not just athletic performance,” Syverson expressed. “To have the opportunity not only to do that but also to see and affect growth in an entire program is even more fulfilling.”

Already, Syverson’s student-athletes have been making their presence felt at various indoor meets across the Southeast. The team’s March 5 campus debut marks the official beginning of the outdoor season. A second home meet, Berry Field Day, will be held April 9, at which time the college will celebrate the official dedication of Clark Track and Dickey Field. That meet will feature a full slate of intercollegiate competition as well as special intra-dormitory and alumni races.

Visit www.berryvikings.com for more coverage.

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Valhalla
It’s been a busy summer for the workers responsible for bringing Berry’s new Valhalla stadium to life. With construction entering its final stages, thoughts are turning to the Sept. 12 grand-opening football game against LaGrange College. Alumni tickets are now available for those who want to share in the exhilaration as the Vikings rush onto OUR field for the first time.

Five games will be played at Valhalla on Williams Field this fall, including the Sept. 12 opener and an Oct. 3 Mountain Day rematch with Washington University of St. Louis. Last year’s Mountain Day game at Barron Stadium in Rome proved unforgettable, producing Berry’s first-ever varsity win (in overtime, no less) and the GEICO National Play of the Year.

Berry FootballHere’s the complete home schedule:

Saturday, Sept. 12
LaGrange College, 6 p.m. (ribbon cutting at 4 p.m.)

Saturday, Sept. 19
Rhodes College, 1 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 3, Mountain Day
Washington University of St. Louis, 6 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 17
Hendrix College, 1 p.m.

Saturday, Nov. 14
Centre College, 1 p.m.

Alumni wishing to purchase single-game tickets can do so in person for $5 each at the Krannert Center information desk the week preceding each home game or at the stadium gate on game day (pending availability). Those wishing to purchase single-game tickets in advance of game week can do so at BerryGameDay.com. (Note: Online purchases include a $1 per-ticket surcharge.) Season tickets good for all five games are available for $30 online (including the surcharge). All seating is general admission.

Free tickets for students, faculty and staff will be available at the information desk in Krannert Center the week preceding each home game. Faculty and staff members are eligible for two free tickets per game. Students receive one. More details will be available soon.

If you can’t wait for the opener, click here to view updated pictures of Valhalla, which includes Williams Field, Clark Track and Dickey Field. Thanks to all who have made gifts through Berry’s LifeReady Campaign supporting this new home for football, men’s and women’s lacrosse, and men’s and women’s track and field. Fundraising is now more than 90 percent complete and will continue until the goal is reached.

We hope you will join us Sept. 12 as we celebrate the stadium’s completion – and cheer our Vikings to victory!

Stadium photo by student Lauren Neumann

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Pole VaultA championship legacy will be reborn in spring 2016 with the resumption of full participation in track and field for Berry student-athletes. Competition in throws, jumps and sprints will be added to the sport, which has been limited to distance running at Berry since the 1980s.

Ready to SoarThe return of the sport that produced Berry’s first conference championship in 1961 will coincide with the completion of Valhalla stadium, Clark Track and Dickey Field. Funded through LifeReady: The Berry College Campaign for Opportunity, the stadium and related facilities will provide a first-class on-campus home for track and field, lacrosse and football.

A national search is now underway for a track and field head coach. Assistance will be provided by Paul Deaton (91C), Berry’s longtime cross country coach, and two members of the football staff, Ossie Buchannon and Zach Smith. Read more.

Vintage photos courtesy of Cabin Log yearbook

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The rhythmic beat of the Viking Drumline provided the perfect soundtrack as students, faculty, staff, board members, project donors and special guests celebrated the Oct. 17 groundbreaking for Valhalla, including Williams Field, Clark Track and Dickey Field.

“What a great day it is for Berry College,” said President Steve Briggs, addressing the large crowd gathered at the construction site just south of the Cage Center. “It’s an important milestone in our ongoing effort to enhance this amazing campus and to create places of opportunity for students, for our friends and for our community. And like the Cage Center behind us, Valhalla will provide a major venue for recreation, excitement, achievement, participation and just plain fun.”

Taking up shovels were Steve Cage (74C), the Berry trustee whose 2012 lead gift initiated fundraising for Valhalla; Bob (62H) and Kay Williams, whose generosity paved the way for the naming of the stadium field; alumni trustees Bert Clark (82C) and Roger Lusby (79C), who led the successful Clark Track Challenge, and Bert’s wife, Cathy; Dr. Ouida Dickey (50C, FFS), who has joined daughters Jennifer (77A, 80C) and Angela (75A, 79C) in making a challenge gift to name the track and field throws area for the late Garland M. Dickey (42C); Steve and Michelle Tart, football parents and project supporters; Randy Berry and Barry Griswell (71C), trustees and LifeReady Campaign co-chairs, and Barry’s wife Michele (70C), all major donors to the project; and Board of Trustees Chair Karen Holley Horrell (74C), another major contributor to the fundraising effort to build the stadium.

Steve CageIn his remarks, Cage (pictured) noted that Valhalla is “a collaboration of hard work, trust and leadership with the Board of Trustees, Dr. Briggs, faculty and staff, students and donors.” He offered special praise to the Berry president, dedicating the new stadium in his honor, and thanked all those who had made gifts to the project. Groundbreaking coverage.

Christened  “a place for us” by SGA President Paton Roden, Valhalla will provide a new home for Berry’s football and men’s and women’s lacrosse teams when completed in 2015. The stadium and adjacent Dickey Field will also make possible the spring 2016 resumption of full competition in men’s and women’s track and field, in addition to hosting intramural competitions and other large outdoor events. Berry’s service entrance will be closed until construction is completed.

Fundraising for Valhalla is now entering its final phase. Gifts to the project can be made online. If you’d like to double your giving power, make your commitment through the Dickey Field Challenge.

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Stadium Donors

From left, Roger Lusby, Steve Cage, Victor the Viking and Bert Clark.

Berry’s planned stadium for football, track and field, and lacrosse got a significant boost – and a name – when Trustee Steve Cage (74C) pledged $2.5 million to start fundraising for the facility and christened it “Valhalla” after the Great Hall of Viking warriors in Norse mythology.

Cage was the major benefactor of the Steven J. Cage Athletic and Recreation Center and also funded four full-tuition scholarships for students in the Campbell School of Business.

Two other loyal Berry supporters, Trustees Bert Clark (82C) and Roger Lusby (79C), are focusing their philanthropic efforts on the Viking blue-tinted track that will circle the new stadium’s field, combining their commitments to create a matching fund (dollar-for-dollar) for all future gifts to “Clark Track.”

The proposed stadium structure will feature seating for 1,200 fans, concessions, game-day and track-and-field locker rooms, and state-of-the-art viewing and press boxes. It will be enhanced by a grassy picnic-style terraced seating area on the opposite sideline. The project also includes the renovation of Richards Gym into a field house with weight room, nearby practice field, and locker rooms for football, lacrosse and tennis, along with associated athletic offices.

“Valhalla will be a gathering place to cheer on our student-athletes, and it will help increase the vibrancy on campus as well,” Cage said. “The Cage Center helped transform the campus by providing recreational and educational opportunities. I look forward to the creation of a festive and spirited atmosphere surrounding football, lacrosse, track and field, and intramurals.”

If you wish to support the stadium project or take advantage of the matching funds available for gifts to the track, please visit our online giving site (be sure to select “Valhalla” or “Clark Track” from the gift designation drop-down menu).

The Krannert Center food court currently referred to as Valhalla will be renamed by students in the coming months.

Full story.

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