Softball team honored with Key to Hillsville

Allen Worrell/The Carroll News Hillsville Mayor Greg Crowder presents Carroll County head softball coach Rick Nester a key to the city on Tuesday night. Crowder presented the plaque for the whole team following the parade to honor the first state championship team in the history of Carroll County High School.

Carroll County’s softball team is not only the 4-A State Champion, the team now has the key to the town of Hillsville.

Hillsville Mayor Greg Crowder presented a plaque with a ceremonial “Key to the City” on Tuesday evening at Pizza Perfect after a parade in the team’s honor.

In medieval times of long ago, people lived in forts or walled cities. When the cities were closed down at dark, only certain people had the keys to open the big door allowing them entrance into the city.

“Today’s meaning of it when a mayor gives the key away to the city is to honor the person and let them know they are the most honored person or people in the town,” Crowder said. “To my knowledge, I don’t think the Town of Hillsville has ever given one away, at least not in a long time, but we wanted to do something special to recognize these girls and coaches.”

The ceremony capped another incredible day for the Cavalier softball team. After capturing the first team state championship in the 46-year history of Carroll County High School three days earlier, the Friends of Hillsville organized Tuesday’s parade on Main Street. With signs, championship t-shirts and well wishes, droves of town and county citizens came out to show their support.

Later, the Town of Hillsville paid for a pizza party at Pizza Perfect, while Hillsville Police Chief Wesley Yonce and officer Shannon Goad paid for the drinks. There, the mayor gave handmade necklaces to each player made by his daughter, Morgan. She also made one for Emily Beamer, who would have been a part of this team, and gave it to her parents, John and Malinda Beamer. Then the mayor presented the key to the city.

“Everybody is excited. This has been a big boost for the town,” Crowder said. “It is great for the morale of the town, the citizens in general, the businesses, they were able to profit from the parade last night. It’s just an all-around win-win situation.”

Crowder said Classic Creations also made and donated state championship t-shirts to the Friends of Hillsville. The shirts will be available for purchase for $10 at the Town of Hillsville’s Summer Nights Concert series on June 20 until they are sold out.

“I just want to thank everybody, especially the Kazim Hillbillies and the police and firemen, everyone who came out to support the girls,” Crowder said of the parade.

Allen Worrell can be reached by calling (276) 779-4062 or on Twitter@AWorrellTCN