Remember when Parkersburg was nominated for ESPN's promotion, TitleTown USA?
Our community went all-out, finishing as the runnerup to Valdosta, Ga.
The great thing about TitleTown is that it brought our often divided community together behind a single cause.
The celebration we put on at Stadium Field was memorable. Supporters of Parkersburg High, Parkersburg South and Parkersburg Catholic gathered to show ESPN our community pride.
Why bring this up today?
Because another nationally-recognized media outlet has placed Parkersburg in its newest contest.
USA Today recently selected three of the top high school rivalries from each state and the District of Columbia to compete against one another with the winners advancing to regional competition, and those winners duking it out for the title of the nation's top rivalry, which includes a $10,000 prize.
Any list of West Virginia rivalries wouldn't be credible without Parkersburg High vs. Parkersburg South. The annual football game has sold out in less than an hour. The dual wrestling match is the best attended in the state, not to mention the loudest crowd you ever will witness.
Sure enough, PHS-South is one of three state rivalries battling for the honor of being West Virginia's top rivalry. The other two are Morgantown-University -no one can quibble with that -and Capital-George Washington, a rather befuddling choice. The list would have been better served had it included at least one of the great small school rivalries that permeate the state.
Voting ends on Monday and unless the results dramatically change, this one is a done deal. When I voted on Saturday afternoon, the results were 91 percent for Parkersburg-Parkersburg South, 6 percent for University-Morgantown and 2 percent for Capital-George Washington. (Don't ask me what happened to the other 1 percent, maybe they wrote in Paw Paw vs. Flemington.)
So PHS-South should safely advance to regional competition, which will run from 11 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 5 to the same time one week later on Wednesday, Dec. 12.
The four regional winners will then advance to the championship round which will take place from 11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 13 to the same time on Wednesday, Dec. 19.
To vote simply go to contest.usatodayhss.com/vote/wv. You can vote as many times as you desire.
While $10,000 wouldn't go a long ways, it would be nice to see each school get $5,000 to put toward their stadium repairs.
Plus, think of the national publicity Parkersburg would receive after being the runner-up for TitleTown.
Like any community we have our squabbles and even some long-standing prejudices. But we also have the ability to come together when it's a good cause. This one certainly qualifies.
Contact Dave Poe at firstname.lastname@example.org