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Ten West Executive Director Nominated as Bicentennial Torch Bearer

Paul Okerson will be one of the 2200 torch bearers throughout Indiana. 

OKERSON_PAULTen West Executive Director Paul Okerson has spent over 30 years of his life dedicated to helping the youth of Central Indiana. From leading youth groups at St. Phillip Neri on the near East side, to hosting dozens of international exchange students, to his newest endeavor of running a Performing Arts center on the North Side in Fortville, Paul has always had the interest of the kids at heart. In recognition of his years of dedication to his community, Mr. Okerson was recently nominated and selected to be one of 2200 torch bearers for the Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay. The event will take a Purdue engineered torch on a five-week tour through all 92 counties in Indiana.

Paul will take the torch on a segment of the route through Hancock County on October 15, 2016, right before the entire journey concludes at the Statehouse in Indianapolis that same day.

Here are some fun facts about the relay from the State’s website:

Join the Festivities: Celebrate “One” Indiana
The Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay is designed to inspire and unify Hoosiers as one of the major commemorative events of the 2016 Bicentennial celebration. Hoosiers will also symbolically “pass the torch” connecting generations to IGNITE our future.

Carrying the Torch: A Once-in-a-Lifetime Opportunity
The torch will be primarily transported by people, passing the flame from torch bearer to torch bearer. The relay will also employ other modes of conveyance that are symbolic of the history and heritage of Indiana, including watercraft, farm equipment, a racecar, horse and wagon, antique automobile, and others.

Patterned after the Olympic Torch Relay, Indiana’s version will pass through all 92 of the state’s counties, cover 2300 miles over a five week period, averaging 72 miles per day.

Celebrations Along the Route
Festivities will vary from town to town, as communities celebrate the torch in their own special way. A specialized Mobile Visitors Center will be created to accompany the torch on its journey.

The relay will culminate in Indianapolis on the Statehouse Grounds, with a special welcome ceremony and celebration.

Join the festivities and celebrate “One” Indiana with fellow Hoosiers. The success of this initiative will depend on the broad-based participation and cooperation from cities and towns across the state.

Torch Relay Facts:

  • 2,300 mile journey across the state traveling through 92 counties
  • The Torch Relay will begin in Corydon, the state’s first capital, and culminate in Indianapolis on the Statehouse Grounds
  • The relay was designed to inspire Hoosiers and promote unity across the state by connecting people, communities, and regions
  • Starts on September 9, 2016 and ends October 15, 2016
  • The torch will travel 6 days per week (Mondays rest day) for 5 weeks/32 days
  • Walkers, runners and torch bearers employing modes of transportation that are representative of Indiana culture and heritage will move the torch along its route
  • Torch Bearers will be chosen from nominations by each county in the state
  • The torch will be accompanied by a caravan that includes a Mobile Visitors Center
  • The Torch Relay will conclude on the Statehouse Grounds with a grand celebration for all Hoosiers

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Ten West Center for the Arts is a performing Arts Center run by Periko Partners. Periko Partners is a 50(1)c3 Non-profit based in Fortville Indiana.

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