Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Why prep athletes need a Hall of Fame - or don't

Officials behind a new High School Sports Hall of Fame and Museum say that being a great athlete - as in one who goes on to super stardom in the Olympics or pro ranks - isn't the only credential needed for induction. Apparently, it doesn't hurt either. Past inductees include NBA stars LeBron James and Dwight Howard, American League batting champ Joe Mauer, and Olympic gold medal swimmer Allyson Felix.

I wish I could be unreservedly enthusiastic about this idea. No doubt it will be a big draw for Easton, Pennsylvania, a good and under-rated place. The city already has the Crayola Factory (300,000 visitors last year). Imagine the influx of kids to tour a $20 million palace dedicated to kids like them who made it big playing sports?

On the other hand, it will be a $20 million palace. According to the AP, "The 20,000-square-foot complex is still being planned but will likely include exhibit space for memorabilia, a holographic theater, a testing and training center for current athletes, an education center for coaches seeking certification, and a "Hall of Achievement" featuring standout prep athletes who went on to attain career success." And a 350-space parking garage.

All celebrating high school athletes.

If you're less a grinch than me (a distinct possibility) and want to help make this happen, there's still time. A $150 donation buys a paving brick with your name on it.

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