The 2nd Annual Central High School All-Year Blowout, April 23, 2016, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. (day portion) and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (dinner banquet), celebrates and contextualizes the historic Central High School. The African / African American Historical Society Museum (AAAHSM, pronounced "Awesome"), Central High School graduates and the school’s extended family, as well as Scrambled Egg(s) Design and Production support honoring its powerful legacy.
Central High (1922-1971), the “Grandfather of Fort Wayne High Schools,” cultivated academic excellence, celebrated athletic dominance, and spawned eternal rivalries — all while thriving as an early adopter of integrated education.
The Sounds of Central is the theme for the 2016 event. The AAAHSM and Scrambled Egg(s) are collecting all of the lost music and sounds of the shuttered school. The Sounds of Central project began in 2015 with the recording of the Central High March Beat Cadence, and the play-by-play recreation of the 1960 Central basketball state championship semi-final game that was recorded without sound. A screening for the basketball recreation was held in May 2015 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Future screenings across Northeast Indiana are also in the works.
Central High School has deep music roots in Northeast Indiana and beyond, with many its graduates receiving national recording contracts, including Sonny Charles (born Charles Hemphill) who fronted the band Sony Charles and the Checkmates. The group, discovered by Nancy Wilson, had one major hit (recorded by Phil Spector), Black Pearl. Plans are in works for the recording of the school song by Central High graduates (either before or directly after the April 23rd event).
The festival jumps off on April 26th, 2015 at the McMillen Park Community Center, from 1 a.m. – 4 p.m. A banquet dinner will follow event in the same venue, and will be held 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. There will be a small exhibition from the AAAHSM the integration of Central High School and Fort Wayne city schools.
The McMillen Park Community Center is located at 3901 Abbott Street in McMillen Park, in the former home of the McMillen Ice Arena.
The 2016 Central High Festival is a collaboration between the AAAHSM (the African / African American Historical Society Museum) and Scrambled Egg(s) Design and Production.
Dr. John Aden, AAAHSM Executive Director: "The festival is an important celebration of city’s shared cultural and ethnic heritage in the field of education and highlights the struggle for progress in terms of racial equality. Central High School, with its unique mix of backgrounds from the Central city, represented a total experience, from academics to athletics, which set several generations on their courses toward excellence. Without a doubt, Central produced Fort Wayne greatest generation, and we hope to honor it. The festival is also a way for our small nonprofit to highlight our collection of Central High School yearbooks and exhibits featuring esteemed and accomplished graduates, in addition to raising funds to supports our operations."
William Bryant Rozier, Event Creative Director, owner of Scrambled Egg(s) Design and Production, is the son of Willie B. Rozier, Class of ’61. Most people know his dad from the basketball court, where he was a Varsity starter since his freshman year. Willie Rozier played in the infamous 1-Point loss semi-final game, one that’s been recreated for the festival. “My dad was always proud of his Central roots. With this project, I’ve learned more about why my father raised my 5 sisters and myself the way he did. I don’t know where his world view was formed, but it was definitely nurtured and encouraged at Central.”