RAPID CITY, S.D. – Every year, the Officials organization honors the top local athletes and contributors while helping to preserve both the past and the future of sports in Rapid City.
The organization is preparing to do it all over again during the annual Rapid City Sports Hall of Fame and Recognition Banquet on Saturday, June 18.
Among the awards to be presented on Saturday include the High School Male and Female Athletes of the Year.
Candidates for the High School Male Athlete of the Year include Simeon Birnbaum from Rapid City Stevens, Landin Winter from Rapid City Central, Cade Kandolin from St. Thomas More, Jason Maciejczak from Douglas and Mitch Heidecker from Rapid City Christian.
Candidates for the High School Female Athlete of the Year include Olivia Kieffer from Rapid City Christian, Jada McNabb from Rapid City Stevens, Matayah Yellow Mule from Rapid City Central, Marin Duffy from St. Thomas More and Lamara Castaneda from Douglas.
Awards will also be presented to Mason Archambault as College Male Athlete of the Year and Dru Gylten as College Female Athlete of the Year.
The Officials Club Member of the Year is Jerome Wickersham.
Plus, four new members will be inducted into the Rapid City Sports Hall of Fame.
Inductees include athletic trainer Paul Richter, rodeo stock contractor Jim Sutton, coach Scott Benson and former NFL placekicker Adam Vinatieri.
“The High School Athletes of the Year are not known to people until that evening by in large,” said Officials club member Tim Henderson. “They all get to say a little bit as younger athletes. Again you back up and you think why are we doing this. Well it’s for history. It’s for historical records. But it’s for the athletes.”
“The Officials” is a group of local sports enthusiasts that was organized in the early 1970s as way to help promote sports in Rapid City.
Plus, the group also helps at different sporting events by ushering and scanning tickets.
The group is celebrating a milestone this weekend with its 50th hall of fame and recognition banquet.
“I have only found maybe one other community in the United States that has a city sports hall of fame,” said the Chairman of the Officials Duane Whalen. “Most communities it’s a college hall of fame or a high school hall of fame or a league hall of fame. The hall of fame is a record of about 100 years of Rapid City sports history. So I think from that standpoint alone, it’s significant and it’s something that we try to maintain and carry forward.”
The sports banquet will be held on Saturday, June 18 in LaCroix Hall at the Monument.
Doors open at 5 p.m. with the meal at 6 p.m. and the program beginning at 7 p.m.
The sports banquet is open to the public.
Tickets are $25 each and can be purchased at the door.