County looks to honor softball team on Rowan welcome signs

Published 12:10 am Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Rowan County Little League softball team is coming to a welcome sign near you.

Since returning from Portland, Ore. with the Little League World Series championship in hand, the Rowan team’s coaches and players have become local celebrities. On Aug. 20, the team was welcomed back to Rowan by a few hundred people, who cheered loudly as the team rushed off a bus to friends and family at West End Plaza. The team was then the subject of a well-attended parade through Salisbury. They’ve also been invited to the governor’s mansion and professional sports games.

Now it appears county officials are working to permanently remember the team at Rowan’s two most prominent entrances. Rowan County Manager Aaron Church has drafted a resolution that asks the Department of Transportation for permission to place a sentence noting the softball team’s championship on Rowan’s Interstate 85 welcome signs.

Currently, signs at the county line on I-85 say “Welcome to Rowan County. A County Committed to Excellence. Home of Dan Nicholas Park.”

The county’s resolution proposes to add “Home of the Little League Softball World Series champions 2015.”

County commissioners Chairman Greg Edds said the sign idea came about as Rowan residents and leaders were looking for an appropriate way to honor the team.

“Everyone was so proud of what happened, and we were all grasping for ideas of ways to honor the ladies and coaches,” Edds said. “We started getting a bunch of emails and texts asking if we would look into doing it along the roadway. It’s something that we started looking at right away.”

Rowan-Salisbury School System Superintendent Dr. Lynn Moody was one of the many who suggested the sign idea, Edds said.

“It’s just been such a big deal for this community,” Edds said. “I said it during the celebration at Hurley Park and I’ll say it again and again. We could have spent $20 million on a national advertising campaign, and we could never have come close to doing what these girls did for our community in nine short days.”

Rowan County would pay for the two signs, which would cost $2,000 each, according to Church.

The exact date when signs would be posted is unclear. Rowan County Commissioners would first need to approve the drafted resolution. It then would be sent to the N.C. Department of Transportation.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.