Lar­ryt­palooza 2017

First an­nual con­cert to ben­e­fit Larry Thomas Joyner Memo­rial Schol­ar­ship Fund

The Progress-Index - - FRONT PAGE - Kate Gib­son Staff Writer

PETERS­BURG — To­day, lo­cal band Mag­no­lia will head­line the first ever "Lar­ryt­palooza" at Ap­po­mat­tox Re­gional Gov­er­nor's School.

All pro­ceeds will ben­e­fit the Larry Thomas Joyner Memo­rial Schol­ar­ship Fund, which helps ARGS se­niors off­set the fi­nan­cial bur­den of col­lege tu­ition. Mag­no­lia will be joined on­stage by spe­cial guest soloist Dr. Wes­ley Joyner, Larry's son and cur­rent U.S. his­tory and gov­ern­ment teacher at ARGS.

"This par­tic­u­lar event was re­ally Wes­ley's idea be­cause his dad loved to hear him sing and loved to watch him per­form," said Rita Joyner, Larry's wife of 42 years. "Given the con­nec­tion with the ar­eas of study at the gov­er­nor's school, Wes­ley felt like the con­cert would be a nat­u­ral fit."

The con­cert be­gins at 7 p.m. this evening (Fri­day, Oct. 13) at the school's James L. Ruffa Per­form­ing Arts Cen­ter. Tick­ets are $10 for gen­eral ad­mis­sion and $5 for stu­dents and alumni of ARGS, and tick­ets may be pur­chased at the door or at the John Ran­dolph Foun­da­tion web­site.

The schol­ar­ship and event both honor the legacy of the late Larry Joyner, who served as the As­sis­tant Di­rec­tor of ARGS from 2005 un­til his un­timely pass­ing in 2016.

"My hus­band was the world's great­est am­bas­sador for the gov­er­nor's school," Rita said. "He was a huge ad­vo­cate for the school, but most of all, he loved the stu­dents."

Larry also un­der­stood first­hand that the fi­nan­cial bur­den of col­lege is a sig­nif­i­cant hur­dle that not ev­ery stu­dent can clear.

"When Larry was a se­nior, in 1968, he was the vale­dic­to­rian of his class and a state de­bate cham­pion," said Rita. "He had all sorts of ac­co­lades, but not the kind of money nec­es­sary to go to school."

For­tu­nately, as a Union Camp Scholar, Larry was able to re­ceive a full ride to the Univer­sity of Rich­mond. His col­lege ed­u­ca­tion may not have been pos­si­ble with­out that schol­ar­ship. Now, Larry's fam­ily wants to help pro­vide the same kind of as­sis­tance and op­por­tu­nity to the stu­dents of ARGS.

The Joyner fam­ily part­nered with the John Ran­dolph Foun­da­tion Schol­ar­ship Pro­gram to set up their memo­rial fund, and in May they were able to award their first $1,000 schol­ar­ship to then-se­nior McKen­zie Adams to aid in her fu­ture stud­ies at Ran­dolph-Ma­con Col­lege.

Rita hopes that this event and fu­ture Lar-ryt­paloozas will help to grow the fund's en­dow­ment, in­creas­ing the size of schol­ar­ships or the num­ber of stu­dents able to re­ceive schol­ar­ships.

"We want to see this event go­ing on for many years," said Rita, "hope­fully for gen­er­a­tions to come."


Dr. Wes­ley Joyner (right) will per­form at “Lar­ryt­palooza 2017” on Satur­day, Oct. 14, to raise money for the Larry Thomas Joyner Memo­rial Schol­ar­ship Fund in mem­ory of his fa­ther, the late Larry Joyner (left).

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