Archived News & Events


High School Building Centennial

Arcola High School opened its doors in September 1917. Construction History, compiled by Sue Stout.

Arcola Community Economic Development (ACED) Logo

ACED is looking for talented individuals willing to create and submit a logo, that will be voted upon, to be used as the new “ Marketing Brand” for the group. Deadline for submissions is Monday, October 15, 2018.

For full Style and Concept Guidelines, please contact Tom Mulligan via email or view the website.

Ryan Pace

Ryan Pace, son of Arcola High School graduates Ginger (Phillips) Coffer and Mike Pace, has been announced as the new general manager of the Chicago Bears. Pace is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University and has been employed by the New Orleans Saints since 2001.

Ghere Family Veterans

Reprint of the "Ghere Family Veterans" by Sue Stout, originally published in the Arcola Record-Herald on November 7, 2013.


The Arcola Alumni Association has initiated its Veterans Recognition project. To be included, a person must meet the following criteria:

  • Attended and/or graduated from Arcola High School
  • Served in any branch of the U.S. Military
  • Currently serving or received an honorable discharge

Click for additional information about the Veterans' Recognition project. Complete and return the form to recommend a veteran for recognition.

Academic Wall

The "Academic Wall" has been established in the main (south) entrance. Click for pictures and additional details.


Arcola High School is in the process of placing banners in the junior high and high school gymnasiums honoring past junior high and high school teams who have won regionals, sectionals, sweet sixteens, or have placed in the state tournaments over the years. This includes football, golf, volleyball, basketball teams, softball, baseball and all track teams and individuals who were state track champions, including championship relay teams.

If you were on one of these winning teams please email or mail this information to Nancy Stiff, athletic director at Arcola High School. Any and all help is greatly appreciated. We do not want to overlook any team or individual who had 1 or more of these major accomplishment.

Trophy Cases

The last section of the new trophy cases was installed on March 23, 2012.

Thanks to Kenneth Hostetler for the outstanding design and craftsmanship. AND THANKS TO ALL THE GENEROUS ALUMNI, FRIENDS, AND ORGANIZATIONS WHO MADE THE NEW TROPHY CASES POSSIBLE.

Click for details.

Trophy Committee Meeting

The committee formed to oversee the renovation and display of school trophies in the new trophy cases held its initial meeting on January 25, 2012. Committee members present were Lisa Sigrist, Nancy Stiff, Jason Retz, Lisa Edwards, Julie Lindenmeyer, Brett Lindenmeyer, Cory Roberts and Dr. Robert Arrol. Randy Rothrock and Byron Bradford could not attend.

The trophy case in the south entrance will contain High School academic, chorus, and band trophies and all Junior High trophies. The trophy cases in the north (gymnasium) entrance will display athletic trophies. All plaques will be hung on the walls near the appropriate trophy case.

The immediate effort is to inventory all the trophies and plaques. Once that is completed, work will begin to repair, rehabilitate, and polish the trophies before putting them on display.

1882 Commencement Program

The commencement program for the class of 1882 has been added. Wilmer Otto has graciously provided an original program. The class of 1882 was the first class to graduate from Arcola High School.

Membership Dues

Due to the overwhelming generosity of alumni and friends during the recent Trophy Case fund-raising, the Alumni Association has decided to eliminate the annual membership dues. In the future, all projects that are undertaken by the Alumni Association will be funded by a targeted fund-raising effort.

General financial support of the Alumni Association will continue to be welcomed. For information about financially supporting the Alumni Association, or to suggest future projects, you should contact one of the Board Members or contact us via Email.

Super Bowl Connection

Arcola High School has a connection with the Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints. Ryan Pace, the son of AHS grads Ginger (Phillips) Coffer and Mike Pace, is Director of Scouting for the New Orleans Saints.

Full Story

2011 Run For The Fallen

The 2011 RUN FOR THE FALLEN will be held in Charleston on August 20, 2011. The event commemorates Illinois service members that have fallen in the line of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq. The community of Arcola suffered the loss of Cpl. Allen Roberts in 2007 and we invite everyone to remember this brave young man at this event. Participants only have to walk/run one mile in memory of a fallen service member.

Rotary Citizen of the Year

Dr. Robert Arrol was recently recognized by the Arcola Sunrise Rotary Club as its 2011 Citizen of the Year.



Robert Avery Memorial Service

A memorial service was held in Arcola on November 17, 2019 for Robert Avery - teacher and coach at Arcola High School in the early 1960's. Arcola High School alumni and Avery family members who attended are pictured below.

Front Row: Jim Strange, Dr. Sam Walton, Reggie Finn, Randy Rothrock, Terry Miller, Doug Dunagan, Ron Gardner
2nd Row: Alex Sahyouni, Adriana Sahyouni, Jena Cartusciello, Susan (Gentry) Avery, Mark Avery, Beverly Avery, Byron Bradford, Lisa Avery, Kelly Avery
3rd Row: Jim Uphoff, Linda (Morris) Thompson, JoAnn (Boesiger) Byers, Angie (Rothrock) Temples, Vicky (Rothrock) Coffin Dorothy Miller, Jami (Jones) Budd, Cinda (Thompson) Berry, Jenni (Vyverberg) Butler, Connie (Ghere) Walton, Connie (Nacke) Ghere, Donna (Smith) McLaughlin, Linda (Wingler) Finn, Beth (Hull) Vyverberg, Billiejean (Arthur) Clark, Ron Vyverberg, Ruth Ann (Perkins) Yoder, Mary (Johns) Baird
Back Row: Wilmer Otto, Jeff Edwards, Jim Monahan, Marvin Thompson, Michael Doyle, Jason Butler, Dan Ghere, Ron Ghere, Linda (Hood Kimball) Dunagan, Mike Monahan, Bill Blackwell, Corky Clark, Allan Yoder

Class of 1959 Reunion

The AHS Class of 1959 will hold a 60th year reunion on September 21, 2019 at the Kaskaskia Country Club beginning at 5:30 PM. Contact Jim Cox for additional information.

Class of 1979 Reunion

The AHS Class of 1979 will hold a 40th year reunion on July 20, 2019. Contact Karla Lampe, Rachel Otto, or Kim Davidson McGeehon for more information.

Additional information will be posted here when it is received.

Class of 1955 Reunion

Any Arcola alumni who graduated before or after 1955 are invited to come to Shae’s Pub in Arcola to help the graduating class of 1955 celebrate their 64th class reunion on Aug. 17, 2019 starting at 4:30 p.m.

Class of 1977 Reunion

The AHS Class of 1977 will hold a reunion on Saturday, September 7, 2019 (Broom Corn Festival weekend) at 6:00 PM at Yoders Kitchen in Arthur, IL.

Visit the AHS '77 Facebook page or contact:

Class of '77
c/o Teresa Nolen
P.O. Box 134
Hindsboro, IL 61930

AHS Class of '78 Reunion

The class of 1978 is planning on getting together for a 40th reunion on Saturday, October 20, 2018 at Shae's Pub & Grub. This will be an informal gathering with a happy hour and appetizers starting at 6:00 PM. There will also be several tables reserved so folks can order what they'd like for dinner around 7:00.

Please let John Fishel know via email if you think you can make it.

Class of 1957 - 60-Year Reunion

The Arcola High School Class of 1957 is planning their 60-year class reunion on July 14-16, 2017. Events planned are:

  • July 14, 2017 (Friday) at 5:00 p.m. – Sweeper’s Bar and Grill at 126 North Oak in Arcola – visit and eat - we met there before. (We will order off the menu – But be forewarned that because of the large number attending we cannot all be served at the same time.)
  • July 15, 2017 (Saturday) at 1:00 p.m. – Tour of the School – plan on about 1 ½ hours. (Many from the Class of 1967 celebrating their 50-year reunion will join us.)
  • July 15, 2017 (Saturday) at 5:00 p.m. – Mattoon Airport Steakhouse at East Route 16, 410 Airport Road in Mattoon – private area - visit, eat and exchange stories.
  • July 16, 2017 (Sunday) at 8:00 a.m. – Denny’s Restaurant at 224 Richmond Avenue East in Mattoon – private room - visit and breakfast.

Be sure to bring the following with you:

  1. A school story (funny or otherwise) that you will share with us all on Saturday evening.
  2. An update on your personal information (address, telephone number, email address, etc. etc. etc) for our contact records.
  3. Info on what is happening in your life.

For those who need lodging, Arcola has a very nice, newly built Best Western Plus Motel on the east side of Arcola at 917 Greenmill Road in Arcola (217-268-5000).

PLEASE…let us know us know NO LATER THAN 1 JULY to what functions above you plan to attend. This Is very important because the restaurants must know for how many they plan to serve – and we are expecting a large turnout. Please also let us know if you are regrettably unable to attend.

RSVP by July 1, 2017 to:

Dr. Robert Arrol
244 South Ridge St.
Arcola, IL 61910

Mrs. Pat (Harris) Johnson
1450 East Co Rd 000 North
Hindsboro, IL 61930

PLEASE, PLEASE. PLEASE…if you are regrettably unable to attend, please send us an update on your personal information for our contact records (address, telephone number, email address, etc. etc. etc)

Class of 1967 - 50th Reunion

The Arcola High School Class of 1967 is planning their 50-year class reunion on July 15-16, 2017.  The reunion organizing committee would appreciate help contacting these classmates:

  • Mike Carson
  • John Emberton
  • Connie (Haley) Tucker
  • Esther Miller
  • Linda (Pedigo) Hardesty
  • Kathy Schultz

Events planned are:

  • July 15, 2017 (Saturday) at 1:00 p.m. – Tour of the School – plan on about 1 ½ hours. (Many from the Class of 1957 celebrating their 60-year reunion will join us.)
  • July 15, 2017 (Saturday) at 7:00 p.m. – Kaskaskia Country Club
  • July 16, 2017 (Sunday) Breakfast (details will be provided during the reunion Saturday evening)

Contact Kris (Walton) Hall at 217-345-9294 or by email with information on the "missing" classmates or to get further information about the reunion.

2018 Distinguished Alumni Banquet

The sixth annual Distinguished Alumni banquet was held Saturday, October 6, 2018 at the Kaskaskia Country Club. The honored Arcola High School alumni and their year of graduation are:

Lt. Col. Edmund P. Smart, deceased (1952)
John Douglas “Doug” Mullikin (1958)
Charles “Skip” Lee (1968)
Steven Earl Bumpus, deceased (1978)
John VanGundy “Van” King (1979)

2017 Distinguished Alumni

Five Arcola High School graduates will be honored as Distinguished Alumni during the Arcola Alumni Association’s alumni banquet at Kaskaskia Country Club on Saturday, October 21, 2017.

The 2017 honored Arcola High School alumni and year of graduation are:

Capt. John D. Kibler, deceased (AHS 1932)
Raymond Arthur “Art” Beazley, deceased (AHS 1959)
John Andrew “Andy” Walton, Jr. (AHS 1962)
Cheryl S. Holaday Hilgenberg (AHS 1966)
Gail Chaney Kalinich (AHS 1980)

2016 Distinguished Alumni

The Class of 2016 Arcola High School Distinguished Alumni and year of graduation are:

Dr. Robert E. Smith (AHS 1955)
Thomas F. (Tim) Monahan (AHS 1957)
Dr. Charles Edward (Ed) Harshbarger, Jr., deceased  (AHS 1958)
Capt. Benjamin J. (Jim) Binford (AHS 1959)
Dr. David J. Ellison, deceased (AHS 1959)
Dr. Nancy K. VanCleave (AHS 1971)

2015 Distinguished Alumni

The Arcola Alumni Association proudly announces the Distinguished Alumni, Class of 2015. Honorees include:

Edward M. Finfgeld, deceased (AHS 1920)
Thomas F. Monahan, deceased (AHS 1927)
Bob Curry (AHS 1957)
Roger Shields (AHS 1961)
Larry B. Rollings, deceased (AHS 1963)
Karen Conlin Faler (AHS 1966)
Don Portugal (AHS 1969)
Michael A. Clark (AHS 1972)

2014 Distinguished Alumni

The Class of 2014 Distinguished Alumni will be honored at the Kaskaskia Country Club on October 11, 2014. Alumni to be honored are:

Dr. E.S. Allen, deceased (AHS 1927)
Bobby Gene Ghere, deceased (AHS 1943)
Russell S. Ghere, deceased (AHS 1943)
James Edward “Ed” Fidler (AHS 1951)
Larry Bushu (AHS 1955)
Dean Sanders (AHS 1956)
Patrick Monahan (AHS 1958)
Terry Miller (AHS 1964)

1962-63 & 1963-64 Basketball Teams

Members of the 1962-63 & 1963-64 Purple Rider basketball teams were recognized on January 24, 2014.

Charter Distinguished Alumni - 2013

The Arcola Alumni Association is proud to announce the charter group of Distinguished Alumni. They will be formally recognized at the Distinguished Alumni banquet on April 13, 2013 at the Kaskaskia Country Club.

Robert N. Arrol, M.D. (1957)
Thomas Blagg (1938)
Byron Bradford (1956)
Robert C. Coombe (1933)
DeLane “Dee” Lindenmeyer, deceased (1956)
Nancie King Mertz (1970)
Carol Pullen (1949)
Robert “Popeye” Pullen, deceased (1938)
Modesta Scott, deceased (1919)
Eunice Collins Sourla, deceased (1927)
John Philip “Phil” Wesch, deceased (1947)

Broomcorn Festival - 2013

Lynda and Jack (AHS 1956) Fishel were honored as Grand Marshalls for the 2013 Arcola Broomcorn Festival. AHS 2000 graduate Matt "Butch" Clark drove the Budweiser Clydesdale hitch in the Broomcorn Festival parade.

Harlem Wizards - 2013

The Harlem Wizards will return to Arcola on Sunday September 22, 2013 at 2:00 PM. The game in the school gymnasium will feature the Harlem Wizards against renowned Arcola Purple Riders - past, present and "wannabees" - for the benefit of the Arcola Grade School.

Click for additional information or you may contact Angie Gentry, Arcola Grade School principal, at (217) 268-4961 or by email.

Alumni Cheerleaders

Cheerleaders (of any age!!) who are alumni of Arcola High School are encouraged to participate in the first Arcola Alumni Cheer Event.

The Cheer Event will be before and at halftime of the Homecoming football game - 1:00 PM on Saturday, October 5, 2013. See the Registration form for more information.

to view a video of the cheerleaders choreography.

Click to see the Arcola High School song - music and lyrics.

Harlem Wizards Coming to Arcola - 2010

The Harlem Wizards will appear at the school gymnasium on November 14, 2010 at 2:00 PM. The opposition (foils, comedic relief, ????) will be Arcola faculty, students, and alumni.

Stellar local athletes, to be coached by Nancy Stiff, who will challenge the world-famous Harlem Wizards are:

  • Jean Chrostoski
  • Brad Pullen
  • Tina Andrews
  • Jason Retz
  • Brianne Miller
  • Jason Butler
  • Tyler Renshaw
  • Emily Coombe
  • Chad Strader
  • Jim Crane
  • Lydia Benson
  • Mike Phillips
  • Chad Eisenmenger
  • Stan Boyer
  • Josh Wilson
  • Jill Randell
  • Vince Rohn
  • Dr. Nathan Roberts
  • Kim Kennell
  • Michelle Joness

Additional local talent that will support the challenge are:

  • Scoreboard/Clock: Mike Lindenmeyer
  • Referee: Chris Slack
  • Co-Announcer: Mike Kerner

Football Mural Dedication
June 24, 2012

One of the murals that will be painted by the Walldogs features Arcola's football tradition. The formal dedication of the mural is scheduled for Sunday June 24, 2012 at 1:00 PM.

Questions/Comments to
Last Revision September 20, 2023