During his long tenure at Grove City High School, band director George Edge was praised for bringing the community together. Now his name will denote a community-gathering place.
On Thursday, June 5, the Grove City High School Band Boosters hosted a retirement dinner for Edge to honor him for his 35 years of service, 27 of which were spent at Grove City High School. The dinner, held in the grand ballroom of the Pinnacle Golf Club, featured a number of Edge's colleagues, former students and administrators and other well wishers who turned out to share stories and offer praise.
"All of us in this room stand on the shoulders of a teacher who has somehow had an impact on us in school and ultimately contributed to making each of us a success and contributing member of society," said master of ceremonies Steven Estepp, superintendent of Mariemont City Schools and former band student at Grove City High School.
"I proudly stand on the shoulders of George Edge."
Near the end of the celebration, Mayor Richard "Ike" Stage presented Edge with a resolution signed by him and City Council declaring that effective June 2, the Town Center Plaza, located at the corner of Broadway and Park Street, will be named the "George Edge Music Park on Broadway" for his contributions.
"You helped bring our community together," Stage said to Edge. "We've been blessed. We've been blessed to have a rich history of band directors and music as part of our city, and we want to continue to acknowledge our blessing."
The plaza and its stage is the site of the Summer Sizzle Concert series, the Grove City Christmas celebration and a gathering place for many other local civic events.
During Edge's tenure, the Grove City High School band earned more than 90 Grand Championship awards, won the Fiesta Bowl National Band Championship, was named the Fiesta Bowl Parade Grand Champions and participated in the Rose Parade in Pasadena, Calif., and the New Year's Day Parade in London, England.
"It's an absolutely incredible experience to be able to say that's my band," said former Grove City High School Principal Tom Rutan.
Edge himself was named the Ohio Teacher of the Year in 2007 and earlier this year was honored with the Ohio Music Education Association Outstanding Music Educator Award.
In addition to having the plaza named after him, Edge was named the grand marshal of the 35th annual Arts in the Alley Parade, presented by the Grove City Area Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the Grove City Girl's Club and scheduled for Sept. 20.
The Grove City High School Band Boosters also established a scholarship in his name, which will be awarded each year to a graduating band member.
"I'm just overwhelmed," Edge said. "It's just the most humbling thing. ... There's so many wonderful memories. It's been a wonderful ride."