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Scarboro Community to host reunion honoring Oak Ridge 85

The reunion honors those 85 students and the Scarboro School teachers that provided inspiration and tools to prepare them for integration in 1955.

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. — The Scarboro Community Alumni Association (SCAA) is hosting a week-long unity reunion called “Rooted in the Community” from Thursday, Sept. 2 to Sunday, Sept. 5.

“The event honors those Scarboro-Oak Ridge TN 85 students who integrated the schools as well as the Scarboro teachers,” said John Spratling, the Vice-President of the organizations as well as Scarboro endowment fund that was established to honor both the Scarboro teachers and students by supporting ongoing enrichment programs such as the ACT Prep Testing, leadership training, scholarships, and youth community service projects.

The Oak Ridge 85 were the first students to integrate Tennessee public schools in 1955 when they started attending Robertsville Junior and Oak Ridge High School. 

RELATED: The Secret in Scarboro: The Oak Ridge 85

The reunion honors those 85 students and the Scarboro School teachers that provided inspiration and tools to prepare them for this new journey, according to a release from organizers.

The community events will last from Sept. 2 to Sept. 5.

Thursday, September 2:

The Scholarship Awards Banquet honoring the scholarship recipients and the Oak Ridge 85 will start at 6 p.m. at the Scarboro Community Center at 148 Carver Avenue. Archie Lee, one of the Oak Ridge 85, the first African American student inducted into the Oak Ridge High School National Honor Society and worked at Oak Ridge Research Institute, now Oak Ridge Associated Universities, will be the keynote speaker. 

Friday, September 3: 

The “Black and White Communities Working Together to Help America" exhibit, which honors the Oak Ridge 85, will be unveiled at 9:45 a.m. in the West Gallery of the Oak Ridge History Museum at 102 Robertsville Road.

The Oak Ridge 85 and Clinton 12 will be honored during halftime at the Clinton vs. Oak Ridge High School football game around 7 p.m. at the Clinton High School Stadium (120 Gilliam Street).

Saturday, September 4:

Unity Parade begins at 9 a.m. from Benedict and ends at Carver Avenue. The featured Bands will be Pearl Cohn High School in Nashville and Austin East High School Band and Soccer Team in Knoxville.

The Fun Day Festival will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Scarboro Community Center with food, vendors, fun activities for youth, band challenges, gospel hour, Old School hour, school supplies and giveaways for youth and more, according to a release.

The Atomic Lodge 1301 and the Roberta Bohanon Temple 1381 with New Direction Health Solutions, will be hosting a vaccine clinic from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 262 Wilberforce Avenue. 

The Black and Gold Ball at the YWCA (1660 Oak Ridge Turnpike) will start at 8 p.m. and honors the Oak Ridge 85. 

Sunday, September 5:

The Oak Ridge 85 will share experiences at various churches in the Scarboro community.

For additional information contact Rose Weaver, SCAA secretary at 865 924 2987.

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