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Mena Arkansas News covering Polk County and the surrounding area

Acorn Holds First Annual ‘Throwback Game’


The First Annual Acorn Throwback game was held recently and was a huge success with both the Acorn girls’ and boys’ basketball teams coming out victorious.  The Acorn girls won 61-26 against Umpire. The boys won 90-45 against Umpire.

The old gym was built in 1958 and had been newly renovated this summer.  Jerry Strasner, Ouachita River School District Superintendent stated, “It was a very special night.  It was like a school reunion at a basketball game.”

Darla Wiles Martel, Acorn graduate of 1979, sang the National Anthem. During half-time, Acorn school officials honored Orval Heath, Mary Jane Hess, Rick Ellison; Bob Beaver, Leon Myers, Jerry Foster, and J D Frost, each having coached teams throughout the years in the old gym.

Hess was the girls’ coach from 1967 to 1970.  Her husband Bill (passed away in 2007) also coached the boys’ from 1967 to 1970. Bill was also honored.  Both, having long careers in education, retired from teaching in Oklahoma.

Rick Ellison, an Acorn graduate was a coach for the junior and senior boys teams in 1980-1981, which were the last games played in the old gym.  Ellison also coached in the new gym and taught math. He later became Acorn High School Principal, and is presently the Middle and High School Counselor.
Orval Heath coached the senior boys and senior girls from 1971-1972 and again in 1975-1976 seasons.  He lead the senior boys to State after winning the Polk County Tournament with a 21 and 9 season.

Bob Beaver, an Acorn Graduate, coached the junior boys and junior girls teams for the 1975-1976 seasons. The 1977, 1978, and 1979 seasons found him coaching both the junior and senior girls teams.  He coached in the new gym, also.  Beaver was the coach for baseball, girls’ volleyball, and softball.  Mr. Beaver retired from his teaching career at Acorn High School.  He also served in the National Guard.

Leon Myers, is a 1953 Acorn Graduate from Posey Hollow.  He served in the US Marine Corp.  Myers started teaching at Acorn in September 1961.  He taught two years in elementary and a third year teaching high school math, current events, and was the Junior and Senior Boys basketball coach for the 1962-1963 season.  Upon leaving Acorn Myers taught math at Mena for 34 years.

Jerry Foster coached both junior teams for the 1971-1972 season.  He coached all four teams for the 1973-1974 season.  Foster is currently teaching in Mena.

J D Frost coached the junior boys and junior girls teams for the 1974-1975 season.

The concession stand raised over $600.00 from the Throwback Game.  It will go towards the Acorn Alumni Scholarship, which will be given to a senior at the end of the school year.

Pictures provided by Shannon Lyle


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