New banners for BHS
They have been a fixture in the Baldwin School District's main gym for years, but on Feb. 1 banners commemorating Baldwin High School state championships will find new homes in the community.
The 11 banners, dating from 1981, are being auctioned by sealed bid to help cover the costs of new banners.
Mike Spielman, BHS cross country and track coach, led an informal group of coaches and community members interested in replacing the old banners.
"I think people are going to be really kind of interested in this," Spielman said. "I don't think people realize how well Baldwin has done in some of these activities."
The new banners, which were hung Saturday, celebrate several previously unrecognized activities, such as debate and scholars bowl. They also have a new format. Under the old system, each state title or runner-up received their own banner. Now each activity is represented and a list of championships, runner-ups or third place finishes, along with the corresponding years, appears beneath the heading.
Ted Zuzzio, who won state titles for girls basketball in 1982 and 1996, had fond memories of both his championship teams.
"The first time we won, it was just so exciting that nobody wanted to leave the floor," Zuzzio said.
Zuzzio credits Baldwin's widespread success to the quality of the people surrounding the programs.
"This is a great community," he said. "We've had success in almost every area. I think that starts with the great parents and great kids."
Another championship coach, Merle Venable, whose 1981 Bulldog football team went 13-0, said he was glad to see some of the often overlooked programs finally get credit.
"I think it's good," Venable said. "Guys like (Charles) Holvoet over at the high school, he's a heck of a debate coach."
Along with the banners, Venable wishes there were more team pictures of award winners.
"I know that a lot of the past teams would like to see pictures of their teams," he said.
The man behind the new banners knows a little something about championships himself. Since 1993, Spielman's cross country and track teams have dominated the Frontier League and state, including titles last year in boys track and the last three years in boys cross country. Spielman said he has no plans to bid on any of the old banners for himself. However, he said he might be interested in obtaining one banner for a former athlete.
"Well, maybe the '93 banner," Spielman said. "I'd kind of like to give it to Buzz (Lambert). Buzz, Ryan Strong and Craig Sullivan, those three seniors, they kind of got Baldwin cross country going. Buzz was kind of the leader."
If anyone wishes to bid on the old banners, they must submit a sealed bid to the district office by Feb. 1. Winning bids will be announced at that time.
Banners up for auction:
1981 State Championship in Football
1982 State Championship in Girls Basketball
1985 State Runner Up in Girls Basketball
1988 State Runner up in Girls Basketball
1988 State Runner Up in Football
1993 State Championship in Boys Cross Country
1994 State Third Place in Boys Cross Country
1995 State Runner Up in Girls Track
1996 State Runner Up in Girls Track
1996 State Championship in Girls Basketball
1996 State Championship in Boys Tennis