Pride in Paris revived

PHS football, volleyball teams are bringing our community together

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Amid the negative talk about drugs, crime and rural thefts, Paris has found its pride again, thanks to the Paris High School football and volleyball teams.

The football team finished the season undefeated — 9-0 — for the first time in 55 years. Let’s face it folks, there were very few of us who really thought the Tiger football program could ever be good again.

We all languished in the stands and on the sidelines watching the Tigers get pummeled. Mercifully there was a running clock when the other teams scored more than 40 points.

Many of us shrugged our shoulders and thought Paris could never win again on the gridiron. Not only were we wrong, suddenly there was real pride in not only our team and our community.

Elsewhere on this page, we are printing a letter from Kurt Speece on behalf of the Paris Ministerial Fellowship who notes the football team is not only winning, but there is a real culture built on character and respect.

Meanwhile, the PHS Lady Tiger volleyball team members played their hearts out Thursday before losing in straight sets to a senior-heavy Newton team to determine the Little Illini Conference champion.

This team has now recorded the most wins in volleyball history at the school — and they’re not done yet. They begin regional play. Only good things are ahead for the Lady Tigers.

Do we have problems in Paris? Of course we do. But we have strong employment opportunities for those that want to work, a growing, vital Horizon Heath and — perhaps most exciting — our Paris 95 and Crestwood schools who are simply among the best in the state.

The Paris community has strong leadership, thanks to Mayor Craig Smith and the Paris City Council. PEDCO is moving to help students in Edgar and Clark counties prepare for the workforce.

Let’s enjoy the ride for the next week as the Tiger football team — now Little Illini Conference champions for the first time in history — move into the playoffs and host a IHSA game.

This is a great place to live.