Back for its fourth year, a rock-infused community celebration will honor four former Upper Arlington coaches on April 23.

Back for its fourth year, a rock-infused community celebration will honor four former Upper Arlington coaches on April 23.

When the Upper Arlington Alumni Association (UAAA) established the Golden Bear Rock Fest, organizers wanted to provide an entertaining, inclusive event that would support efforts to maintain links for past Upper Arlington students.

The event still serves those purposes, but it also seeks to honor former Upper Arlington teachers and staff members for their influence on students and their contributions to the local community.

"It's a great way to get everybody back together and, for one night, everyone feels like they're 18 again," said Joanie Dugger, director of both the UAAA and Upper Arlington Education Foundation. "It's also a fundraising event for the alumni association."

Rock Fest will be held from 7-11 p.m. Saturday, April 23, at the St. Agatha Church Event Center, 1860 Northam Road. Tickets cost $25 each and can be purchased at or by sending a check to UAAA Rock Fest, 1950 North Mallway, Columbus Ohio 43221.

While the event is open to anyone 21 and older -- not just UAHS graduates -- ticket supplies are limited to about 400, Dugger said.

"Last year, we sold out," she said.

This year's honorees are:

* Neal Billman, who coached football at Jones Junior High and then was head line coach under Marv Moorehead for three state champion Golden Bear teams that went a combined 48-1. Billman also was head football coach at Gahanna Lincoln High School from 1970-99, amassing a record of 62-12 and winning five Ohio Capital Conference championships.

* Pete Corey, a former UAHS social studies teacher who coached football and baseball and who started a 17-year stint in 1970 as UAHS head football coach. He also was head football coach at Bishop Ready High School before coming back to UAHS as the football team's defensive coordinator from 1996-2001.

* Dick Fryman, a former UAHS biology teacher who served as the school's assistant athletics director from 1970-86. He also was an assistant football coach for five years, head wrestling coach for seven years and was head coach of a tennis program that won 18 state championships and achieved an overall record of 350-27.

* Dale Hartney, who taught eighth-grade American history and ninth-grade world history at Hastings Junior High School and coached girls track and field (1970-75) and girls basketball (1971-75) at the school. At UAHS, he taught American history, AP American history, AP American government, AP European history and AP American studies. He also coached boys and girls cross country, boys and girls track and field and junior varsity girls basketball. Hartney coached numerous individual and team state meet qualifiers from 1977-2012, and his girls cross country teams were state champs in 1985, 1986 and 1990.

Entertainment at the Golden Bear Rock Fest will be provided by two bands with deep UA roots: Temple Monkey, with members Charlie Bleak, UAHS class of 1968, Jim Lynch, Bill Lutz and Craig Pataky, class of 1971, and Bill Wyatt, class of 1969; and The Majestics, with members John Sproat, UAHS class of 1964, Rodger Wilson, class of 1965, John Workman, class of 1964, and David Balser, class of 1965.

Proceeds from the Rock Fest support the UAAA, primarily in its efforts to maintain, which helps more than 30,000 UAHS graduates stay connected.

The money also aids UAAA in funding the Traditions newsletter, and to pay for the annual July 4 UAAA Block Party.

"I am excited about this event, not just from the alumni association standpoint, but I'd like for this to be a community event where anybody can come," said Ron Johnson, UAAA president. "This helps us maintain our website and database and, to me, it's real crucial that you have a one-source data point for alumni.

"We also want to continue to highlight important people who were staff from the schools."

Along with the music and a ceremony for the honorees, Schmidt's Sausage Truck will provide a la carte food and drinks and there will be a cash bar.

"It's so fun," Dugger said. "It's a communitywide celebration and we want to make sure everyone is included."