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Released September 17, 2003


HATTIESBURG - A host of activities to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Payne Center at The University of Southern Mississippi is scheduled for the month of October.

The Payne Center is a nationally recognized fitness and recreation facility for use by Southern Miss students, faculty, staff and alumni. Built in 1993, the center was named for brothers Jimmy Austin Payne and James Larry Payne, Southern Miss graduates and benefactors.

In the 10 years since its opening, the Payne Center has been an important aspect of life at Southern Miss.

"It has really added a lot to life at Southern Miss because it allows the university to address more than just the mental aspect of its students by addressing their need to stay physically active as well," said Stacey Ready, assistant director of recreational sports at Southern Miss.

The National Intramural-Recreational Sports Administration has named the Payne Center one of the top 13 such facilities in the nation. The Payne Center offers recreational activities that include an indoor swimming pool, multiple workout rooms, volleyball courts and basketball courts.

Among the events scheduled to mark the Payne Center's 10th anniversary are the following:

" Monday, Oct. 21 - Carolyn Cornelison, a national spokesperson with Anheuser-Busch and a Southern Miss grad, will present the "Courage to Care" program at Bennett Auditorium at 7 p.m. This is a positive peer influence and alcohol awareness program. Admission to the program is free and open to the public. The program is sponsored by Southern Miss Recreational Sports in conjunction with Southern Miss Greek Life and Southern Beverage.

" Tuesday, Oct. 21 - Fun-themed intramural sports at the Payne Center; time TBA. Contact Robert Borden at (601) 266-5405.

" Wednesday, Oct. 22 - Classical guitarist John DeChiaro will present a concert on the Bruce and Virginia Wilgus Fitness Trail at the Payne Center at noon. Admission is free and open to the public.
" Thursday, Oct. 23 - A luau will be held on Pride Field at the Payne Center. The university commons will close and the evening meal will take place here instead. Sponsored in conjunction with Southern Miss Food Services.

" Saturday, Oct. 25 - A "Tailgating on the Trail" and 10th anniversary celebration will be held on the Bruce and Virginia Wilgus Fitness Trail at 10:30 a.m. Dignitaries such as the Payne Brothers and university officials will be in attendance. Admission is free and open to the public. Contact Tricia Linton at (601) 266-5405.

" Sunday, Oct. 26 - The Rocky Horror Picture Show will be shown at Pride Field at the Payne Center at 8 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. Attendees are encouraged to dress up and enjoy this cult classic in traditional interactive fashion.

" Tuesday, Oct. 28 - A Children's Fitness Festival will be held at the Payne Center, Court Four, at 5:30 p.m. The festival is open to children up to 12 years of age. Contact Seth Robertson at (601) 266-5405.

" Wednesday, Oct. 29 - Howl-oween on the Trail will be held on the Bruce and Virginia Wilgus Fitness Trail at sunset. Open to children up to age 12, this event is free and open to the public, benefits the Humane Society, and is sponsored in conjunction with Delta Tau Delta and Pi Kappa. Trick or treaters will bring dog and cat food, and receive treats in return. There will be different stations along the trail with adoptable pets at each station.


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April 20, 2004 4:09 PM