Tiger Feature: Local Area Restaurant Hosts TSU Basketball Appreciation Dinner
Thursday, April 2, 2009

Nashville --- In an event spearheaded by the owner’s of Harper’s Restaurant, TSU fans and supporters gathered to celebrate the Lady Tiger and Tiger basketball teams.


The Inaugural Appreciation Dinner for the Tennessee State University men and women’s basketball teams, hosted by nearby Harper’s restaurant, was held on Tuesday night and had over fifty sponsors.


“I got the idea at the last home game,” commented Paul Harper, owner of Harper’s Restaurant. “I said to my self, I want to do something for them”


There were fifty-five sponsors who joined forces with Mr. Harper and his wife Senator Thelma Harper to make the appreciation dinner a success.


“I called a few people that I knew supported TSU and sent emails and they responded to me,” Mr. Harper said concerning the sponsors. “But for most of them, contact was made through coming in the restaurant.”


One of the night’s sponsors, Fred Metcalf, a 1959 TSU All-American in football, opened the program with prayer. President, Dr. Melvin N. Johnson and Athletics Director, Teresa Phillips also had remarks. Head coaches John Cooper and Tracee Wells were introduced and had words as well as the Tiger and Lady Tiger basketball players. Senator Harper also had a special presentation.


 “I think the event was great, I want to do it again and all of the people that supported said they wanted to do it again.”


Towards the conclusion of the celebration, the Harper’s along with other employees of the restaurant were presented tokens of appreciation from AD Teresa Phillips and coach Tracee Wells for their efforts and support of the teams. 


The all-you-could-eat buffet featured many Harper’s favorites, such as ribeye steak, salmon over rice, baked chicken, macaroni and cheese and much more.  Jazz musicians Casme’ and Will Davenport provided the live entertainment for the evening.


“We are so thankful that Mr. & Mrs. Harper invited both the men’s and women’s basketball team to fellowship with them,” commented coach Tracee Wells. “Our Tiger and Lady Tiger supporters have always been great. It was a festive evening filled with good times, good fun, and good friends. And we look forward to next year.”


Appreciation Dinner Sponsors

Harper’s Restaurant

Charles Fitzpatrick

What’s the 411? With Sharon Kay Talk Show

William Head

Lelan A. Statom

Joel Caudle

Roderick Townsend

H. Kenneth Harper, Sr.

Larry & Deborah Cole

Charlene Stuart

Wilburn Caroll

Rodney S. Williams

Steve Turner

Harold Love Jr.

Dr. William Butler

Ron Lawson

Darrel E. McClain

Marius L. Rush

Lorenzo Washington

William Coleman

Dr. Oliver Presley

D’Arcy Porter

Frank Reed

Sebastian Watson

Angela Bearden

Sam’s Club

Thomas Wesbitt Jr.

Dr. Robert Butler

Gary Burke

Jeffrey S. McMillan

Gene & Augustine Green

Tonya Robinson

Carolyn Onyeme-Odie Buchanon

Dr. D. Billye Sanders & Rev. Sanders

Dr. George Butler

George Thompson

R&R Liquor Store, Inc

Melvin Black

James Jordan

Jamie Isabel

Wesley D. Gullatte

Jessie James (TSU Football Alumni)

Atty. Julian Blackshear Jr.

Oliver Smith

Melvin Smith

JT Smith’s Barber Shop

Earl Hunt

Harold Turnks

Walter Hunt

Liz Cleveland

George Williams

Dr. Jim Sawyler

Fred Metcalf

Robert S. Williams

Ed Whitmore

Richard Lewis