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Ninth Avenue School celebration is today

Hendersonville Middle School is inviting Ninth Avenue School alumni and their families to a drop-in “Ninth Avenue School Day” Community Celebration from 3 to 4 p.m. today at the middle school.


Celebrating the Ninth Avenue School heritage in Henderson County, the socially distanced outdoor event will feature a walking tour of historical Ninth Avenue School markers by alumnus Ronnie Pepper plus a chance for alumni to share their voices with the current school community.

For several years, HMS has invited local Tiger alumni to speak to students. In 2019, HMS teachers crafted a more purposeful look into their school’s history, celebrating on Feb. 15.

The celebration takes place just a few days before the official “Ninth Avenue School Day” on Feb. 18, as proclaimed in 2006 by then-Mayor Greg Newman, and coincides with Black History Month lessons on tolerance, North Carolina history, civil rights, segregation and more.

Instead of bringing Tiger alumni into the school to speak to students this year, HMS staff will host Pepper and alumni on a guided tour of historical markers located on the campuses of Hendersonville Middle School and nearby Oakland Cemetery.

The community event is designed to provide Tiger alumni an interactive opportunity to reminisce, meet current HMS staff, and share their Ninth Avenue School experiences and memories while following proper safety precautions in a socially distanced environment.

A separate, virtual event is planned for HMS students to learn about Ninth Avenue School history and hear the voices of alumni sharing their past. Students will interview alumni and examine primary resources from Ninth Avenue School, including digitally catalogued yearbooks.

“In celebration of our school’s heritage and for a localized study during Black History Month, we want to remind community members with ties to the Ninth Avenue School that they can digitally access ‘The Tiger’ – the Ninth Avenue School Annuals from 1950 to 1965,” said Principal Joni Allison. The link to “The Tiger” digital yearbook issues can be found on the Hendersonville Middle School website. For questions Principal Joni Allison at