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Improvements coming for John R.W. Brown Gymnasium

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By Chris Cannon

ccannon@lafollettepress.com

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JACKSBORO-Out with the old, and in with the new.

Campbell County High School is well under way, as they are revamping John R.W. Brown Gymnasium.

“We’re very excited,” Campbell County principal Jamie Wheeler said. “I don’t think it’s been painted – the top part of the gym – I don’t know how long it’s been. I’ve heard it’s never been painted, so we’re really excited about it.”

Woody’s Professional Services, along with Lindsay’s Carpet and Paint and Smith Hardware, are totally redoing the Cougar gym.

With new coats of paint already on the walls, the previous Cougars, one on each end of the gym, are now covered up.

“We’re getting the walls repainted,” Wheeler said. “We’re painted over the Cougars, and we’re going to have new stuff up there. We’re having something designed to be on the walls. It’s already brightened it up. It’s unreal.”

However, to some, it could be a breaking of tradition.

According to Greg Woodson of Woody’s Professional Services, the murals had been part of the gym for quite a while.

“I can remember them painting those Cougars when I was in school,” Woodson said. “The art class did the paintings.”

Woodson graduated in 1981.

“Greg, he was taking pictures and Facebooking it,” Wheeler said. “I’d say it’ll be a shock coming in. It’ll be new, but it’s time for a change. That’s been over 30 years.”

Campbell County head coach Matt Housley said it’s time for a change.

He said he’s glad to see them updating the gym, saying the updates could make John R.W. Brown Gymnasium one of the nicer ones around.

“We’ve kind of went away from a lot of the cougar heads and stuff like that,” Housley said, referring to the now covered murals. “We’ve kind of went to the paw and the new logo at half court. It just looked like there were a bunch of different cougars that looked nothing alike. It’ll be nice to see them get all universal, looking about like each other.”

Lance Albright of 1313 Inkorporated, a tattoo parlor in LaFollette, is designing the new logo for the gym.

With a fresh coat of paint, new logos and a brighter gym, Housley said it’s something the players will be proud of.

“It’s definitely nice for the kids to walk in,” he said. “It’s going to make our gym look a ton better. It’s just another one of those things that are going to give our kids more pride in their school and program. They know we’re starting to update everything and catch up to everybody else, as far as how our gym looks and the facilities. They’re going to enjoy it, and it’ll be more of a mental thing for them.”

Stay tuned to the LaFollette Press Facebook page (www.facebook.com/lafollettepress) and the website for continuing coverage and updates on the project’s progress.