Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos quarterback and future Hall of Famer, will be the keynote speaker for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's All Arkansas Preps awards banquet, sponsored by St. Vincent.
Manning will present awards to the top outstanding high school athletes in the state on Saturday, June 1 at the Wally Allen Ballroom in the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock. Manning will also be the banquet's featured speaker and will answer questions from the crowd, which will include 300 student athletes and their parents.
Keith Jackson, a native Arkansan and former NFL star, will emcee the event.
All Arkansas Preps celebrates high school athletes from across the state and their accomplishments in eight different sports. An editorial committee from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette picks first, second and sophomore male teams in football, basketball, baseball and soccer, and female teams in basketball, softball and soccer. Male/female teams in golf, tennis and track are chosen through Overall and Meet of Champs statewide competition. The committee polls coaches and media members from across the state for team recommendations, taking into account individual statistics and team success from the previous season.
More than a thousand people will attend the event, including student athletes, coaches, parents and sponsors. Manning will present the Outstanding Player Award in each sport (male and female) as well as the Overall Male Athlete, Overall Female Athlete and Coach of the Year.
Other awards will be given to honor special athletes that have made an impact on and off the field. St. Vincent will present an award to a student athlete who has overcome a health challenge to excel in one of the eight sports. Banko will present the award. The P.A.R.K Education Award will recognize one athlete who has made great achievements on the field and in the classroom. The Hussman Award will be presented to an athlete who has excelled off the field in his/her community. All those honored will be chosen by committee from entries submitted by high school coaches and the general public.
Student athletes that make up each sports teams (first, second and sophomore) will receive free admission into the event.
Depending on demand and availability, general admission tickets could become available after April 15. Visit www.allarkansaspreps.com
for more details on ticket sales after April 15.