Overcash is grand marshal of Southern Rowan Christmas Parade; complete lineup for Nov. 22 event

Published 12:05 am Tuesday, November 15, 2022

By Susan Shinn Turner
For the Salisbury Post

CHINA GROVE — If you’ve ever played baseball or softball at the China Grove Little League fields, you’ll see a familiar face at the start of this year’s Southern Rowan Christmas Parade.

Ronnie Overcash, longtime league president, is serving as grand marshal.

He was nominated because of all of his hard work with China Grove youth sports by former events coordinator Patti Price.

Overcash started coaching in 1987 when his son, Micah, now 45, started playing.

“I coached ages 9-13 for three years,” he recalls.

Overcash became vice president of the league in 1992, when it expanded to ages 4-6 coach pitch teams and ages 7-8 machine pitch teams. Girls’ softball was added in 2003.

“We expanded according to need,” Overcash notes.

He became league president in 2016.

“We had three good years, and then COVID came along,” he says. “That was the worst year I’ve ever lived through. There was no sports and no church. It was awful.”

Overcash is a lifelong member of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, where he’s held a variety of roles over the years.

“We bounced back in 2021,” he says of the league.

This year, the league offered spring ball from April to June, with 350 players, then fall ball from September to the end of October, with 295 players.

“I can’t take the credit,” Overcash says with modesty. “I have a tremendously good board and commissioners. One person can’t do it. I have to give my board and commissioners all the credit in the world.”

The commissioners serve over each age group and serve on the board. They’re all volunteers.

Commissioners include Andrew Deal, Will Frazier, Robert Long, Amber Savage, Michelle Gay, Jamie Morgan, J.R. McMillan, Jason Overcash and Jerald Overcash.

Deal played ball as a kid, and his team played against the team Overcash coached.

“It’s like working with my dad,” Deal says. “Ronnie is organized, and he thinks ahead on everything. He communicates well. He’s brought good life skills to a lot of kids. We’ve been around a long time and we’re still going strong, and it’s because of people like Ronnie.”

“Someone took time and effort when my children were growing up,” Overcash says. “I feel like it’s a calling from God. It’s something I can do to give back to China Grove.”

Overcash gives credit to the town for success in youth sports. Additionally, the China Grove Civitan Club donates half of its concession sales to the league.

“It helps us keep costs lower so families can afford to play,” he says. “We don’t turn anybody away.”

Families who come to the China Grove ball fields can count on a family environment.

“We have a policy that parents and coaches can be banned for a season if there’s any bad behavior,” Overcash says. “In this day and time, you have to be a little strict.”

Deal, who’s police chief, says that he encourages officers to come during games and interact with children, so there’s always a positive police presence there.

Ironically, Overcash didn’t play ball growing up.

“The biggest part of my summers were spent with my grandparents in Landis working in the garden,” he says.

His father, Richard, served as China Grove police chief from 1962 to 1984. His mother, Margaret, worked at Cannon Mills in Kannapolis. Overcash served two four-year terms on the China Grove Town Board. He’s retired from Food Lion after 43 years in the distribution center.

Overcash has four children, 10 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren. He travels often to Winston-Salem to see Micah’s three boys play ball.

His sisters, Linda Hampton and Rita Akers, will likely be sitting at St. Mark’s when their brother passes by on the parade route.

“Linda said she’d be there with bells on,” Overcash says. “She’s more excited than I am.”

It will be a family affair for Overcash. His daughter, Rhonda Martin, will drive him, and granddaughter Taylor will ride with him and help throw out candy.

When he’s not at the ball fields, he’s usually playing golf. His favorite course is Pudding Ridge in Mocksville.

The 2022 Southern Rowan Christmas Parade (44th annual) on Nov. 22 in China Grove and Landis. Here is the lineup:

1. Town of Landis Police

2. Town of Landis Police

3. Town of Landis Police

4. China Grove Police

5. China Grove Police

6. Rowan County Sheriff Kevin Auten

7. Rowan County Sheriff Kevin Auten

8. Rowan County Sheriff Kevin Auten

9. China Grove Fire Department Ladder 43

10. China Grove Fire Department Engine 431

11. Town of Landis Fire Engine 1

12. Town of Landis Fire Ladder 58

13. Town of Landis Fire

14. JCHS HOSA Club

15. South Rowan High School Army JROTC

16. Grand Marshall Ron Overcash

17. Bostian Heights Fire Department

18. Bostian Heights Fire Department

19. Rowan County Emergency Services

20. Rowan County Emergency Services

21. Rowan County Emergency Services

22. Rowan County Emergency Services

23. Rowan County Emergency Services

24. Rowan County Emergency Services

25. Rowan County Emergency Services

26. Rowan County Emergency Services

27. Enochville Fire & Rescue Dept, Inc.

28. Landis Alderman / Mayor

29. Landis Alderman

30. Rowan County Rescue Squad Truck

31. Rowan County Rescue Squad Airboat

32. Atwell Township Volunteer Fire Department

33. Atwell Township Volunteer Fire Department

34.  Locke Township Fire Department

35. China Grove Town Council – Vintage Fire Truck

36. Tribute to Officer Kara Alsup EOW 12/12/2020

37. Rowan County Board of Commissioners

38. Carl Ford NC Senate

39. Sheriff Elect Travis Allen

40. Orange and Blue Crew JCHS

41. Carson High School Marching Cougars

42. Jesse C Carson High School Homecoming Queen Bailey Zino / Homecoming King Ian Kirchbaum

43. State Employees Credit Union

44. Rowan County Homeschool Association

45. Center Stage Dance Company

46. Center Stage Dance Company

47. Kristina Cook – State Farm

48. Brooks Brothers Home Improvement LLC

49. Trinity UMC Pre-K / J.R. Ritchie Electric

50. Prosale Motors Inc

51. Daimler Truck Group Military Truck

52. Daimler Truck Group Military Truck

53. 704 Powersports

54. Amvets Post 565 Queen Kate Carter

55. RSYFL- Raiders Cheerleaders

56. China Grove Middle School

57. Rowan Little League Softball 8u All Stars – State Champions

58. Team Carolinas Dominos

59. Embellish Boutique/ Brooke & Brooke

60. Legion post 185 Post Commander

61. Dimensions Dance Arts

62. Dimensions Dance Arts

63. S.A. Sloop Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.

64. Truth Ministry

65. Blast Zone

66. Boogerwoods for the cure of Cystic Fibrosis

67. Max Cooper’s 1966 Chevelle

68. Lora Belle Baby/Imagination Clubhouse

69. South Rowan High School Cheerleading

70. South Rowan Raider Regiment

71. South Rowan Homecoming Queen Audrey Weaver

72. South Rowan High School HOSA

73. South Rowan Baseball 2022 3A State Champions

74. Genesis Baptist Church

75. Legion Post 185 Queen Sara Victoria Pierce

76. Jenkins All Terrain

77. Town of China Grove Park Advisory Board

78. Corriher-Lipe Middle School Cheerleading

79. Cornerstone Church of Salisbury, Inc.

80. Rowan Wrestling Academy

81. Barrel Cars

82. Key Real Estate

82A. Key Real Estate

83. Grove Cartel Brewing Company

84. Triple Threat Dance Studio

85. Triple Threat Dance Studio

86. Miss Rowan County Veteran 2022 Rachel Webster

87. National Fleet Management

88. Rowan Republican Party

89. Sport Clips Haircuts of Salisbury

90. Old Town Soap Co

91. First UMC China Grove

92. Highest Praise Kidz Church

93. Southern Style Cloggers

94. Willowbrook Builders Inc

95. Willowbrook Grounds

96. Carolina Farm Credit

97. F&M Bank

98. Camp Gladiator

99. Friendship Baptist Church

100. VFW Post 3006 Auxiliary Kenley Miller Poppy Queen

101. Fletcher and Gaines Salon

102. Cici’s Pizza

103. Kannapolis Pediatric Dentistry

104. Cornerstone Baptist Church

105. Elevation Cheer Co.

106. Goodman Farm Supply

107. Highest Praise Music Department

108. Morgan Well & Pump, Inc.

109. GNC

110. Rowan Relay for Life

111. The Candy Shoppe on Main

112. East Rowan FFA

113. Josh Lyles Photography

114. Salisbury Dance Academy

115. Salisbury Dance Academy

116. JR. Miss North Carolina McKinlee Long

117. The Forum of Salisbury

118. Cub Scout Pack 301

119. Maze Of Terror

120. N.C. Transportation Museum

121. Laci Cummings 2022 Sparkler Supreme Miss Kannapolis Trey Bostian 2022 Mr. Kannapolis

122. Aiyanna Bostian 2022 Director’s Choice Miss. Concord Cydney Livengood – 2022 Teen Miss. Concord

123. Heritage Carports

124. Rowan Public Library – South Branch

125. First Baptist Church China Grove

126. Southern Faith Riders

127. Santa

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