Tuesday, March 21, 2000
by James Arthur, HokieCentral.com
Ookie's Excellent Adventure, Part 3
This report is the third of a three-part series covering The City of Newport News' special salute to Michael Vick during the weekend of March 17th and 18th.
Newport News, VA - The City of Newport News' salute to their hometown hero, Virginia Tech quarterback Michael Vick, continued and concluded Saturday with three special events sponsored and organized by the City of Newport News Department of Parks and Recreation, Newport News Public School System, and the Peninsula Sports Club.
Saturday morning, a special "Family Breakfast with Michael Vick" was held at the cafeteria of Heritage High School that was attended by a sell-out crowd of over 300 people, including many young people.
Newport News Vice-Mayor Allen served as the emcee for this event.
In attendance were Newport News School Board Vice-Chairperson Ashe, James "Poo" Johnson, Warwick High School Head Football Coach Tommy Reamon, Virginia Tech Assistant Coach Jim Cavanaugh, as well as family and friends of Vick. Current Virginia Tech football players Andrae' Harrison and Joe Wilson, both from Newport News, were in attendance, and recognized as well.
Later that morning, a special "Meet and Greet Session with Michael Vick" was held at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Hampton Roads Gymnasium. Hundreds of Newport News area children turned out to meet Vick, and each received an autographed photo to take home.
Finally, an open "Community Rally" was held at Todd Stadium Saturday afternoon to conclude the City's salute to Vick.
The rally was emceed by Dr. Oliver Spencer of the Newport News Public School system, and special guest speakers included Mayor Frank, Chairperson Oder, Coach Reamon, and Virginia Tech Assistant Coach Jim Cavanaugh.
In attendance were numerous students from the eight Newport News middle schools, as well as students from Newport News junior high and high schools.
Michael Vick was the guest of honor, as well as the featured speaker. Vick spoke to the students in attendance about the importance of working hard to maintain a satisfactory grade point average, and about the difficulties and struggles he faced in high school and during his transition to college.
Finally, a special ceremony was held to recognize the retirement of Vick's Warwick High School jersey.
Additional special items and pictures from the weekend celebrationPre-produced autographed picture that all attendees of the events received
Front and back cover of the Friday night dinner program
Transcript of the special highlight video produced by Newport News Public School System in honor of Michael Vick
Transcript of the letter received by Vick from the Peninsula District Principal's Council
Vick listens to a speaker at Friday morning's ceremony at Warwick High School
Vick receives a special plaque from Warwick SCA President Adam Mangana
Vick listens to Warwick Principal Gene Jones read his special letter of recognition from the Peninsula District Principal's Council
Warwick Coach Tommy Reamon introduces Vick
Vick's family waits on stage for the retirement of the jersey
Principal Jones unveils the framed Warwick # 7 jersey
A proud Vick with his family on stage
The Boddies and Vicks share a special family moment
Vick is interviewed live by WVEC TV-13 Sports Anchor Scott Cash Friday night before the dinner party
Scott Cash interviews Frank Beamer live before the dinner party
Coach Jim Cavanaugh speaks at the Saturday morning breakfast for Vick
Vick takes the podium on Saturday morning
Vick makes his point to the children about staying in school and setting goals for themselves