Tri-Village News

Larry Larson Middle School

'Mr. High School Sports' back for official dedication


The Grandview Heights City School District will hold the official dedication of Larry Larson Middle School at 7 p.m. May 16 in the middle school gym, 1230 Oakland Ave.

For those attending the ceremony, bow ties are optional.

It's a good bet, though, that Larson will don one of his signature bow ties when he attends the event.

The school board voted in October to rename the middle school portion of Edison Intermediate/Middle School after Larson, an action recommended by a facility-naming committee.

Larson, who now lives in California, worked as a teacher, coach and athletic director in Grandview from 1966 until his retirement in 1994.

He returns to Grandview each May to help oversee the district's fifth- and sixth-grade camps, and the dedication ceremony was scheduled to be held when he was in town.

The ceremony will be relatively low-key per Larson's request, said school board Vice President Debbie Brannan, who is heading up the committee that organized the dedication.

"We've received some input from Larry and he really doesn't want a big deal to be made. He's very humble," she said. "But he understands we want to do something formal to recognize him and all he means to the community."

The dedication ceremony will include remarks by former Grandview Heights High School Principal Rick Bongiorno and Melanie Lolli, current director of the fifth- and sixth-grade camps. Pre-recorded remarks by graduating senior Luke Evans, who will be participating in a track meet, also will be shown, Brannan said.

Larson is expected to speak, she said.

A rolling slideshow of photographs featuring Larson will run throughout the ceremony, Brannan said.

A reception line will be held following the ceremony in the middle school commons, she said. Bow-tie cookies and punch will be served in the commons.

Larson became known as "Mr. High School Sports" for his sports reports on local radio. He also is a former ThisWeek News columnist.

"Larry's so deserving of this honor because of all he's done for our community and our schools," Brannan said. "He's such an enthusiastic personality. He had a positive impact on every student he came in contact with, whether it was as a teacher or coach."

"Everyone knows him as Mr. High School Sports, but what a lot of people outside of Grandview don't know about Larry is that he started the fifth- and sixth-grade camps," said board President Grant Douglass, who also served on the dedication ceremony committee.

The camps benefit not only the younger students, but the high school students who serve as camp counselors, Douglass said.

"You can't measure the impact he's had on our community," he said.