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Croquet tournament participants recall founder

By Hannah Declerk hdeclerk@marshallnewsmessenger.com
June 4, 2011 at 5:06 p.m.


Marjorie Perkins' legacy lived on Saturday as community members participated for the first time in the Starr Family State Historic Croquet Tournament without its much-adored founder. 

Ms. Margie's Wicket, Wicket Croquet tournament was 9 a.m. to noon Saturday on the East Texas Baptist University practice field.

The tournament is in its 18th year as the major fund-raiser for the Friends of the Starr Family Home, which supports the historic site's educational programs and preservation.

"It went as smoothly as it usually does, but I could tell Ms. Marjorie is not here, because she could twist arms so well," said Friends president Lynn Lomax.

This was the first year without its creator and champion, Marjorie Perkins, the longtime president of the Friends.

Ms. Perkins lost her life this past January after an on again and off again 30-year struggle with cancer.

"She was so darling, she had a wonderful sense of humor, and I remember she would always give us tips on how to properly wear sun screen," said Ms. Lomax.

Players were encouraged to wear all white attire, or dress historically to match the time period of when the original Starr family was alive.

This year, the event had 18 teams, two more than last year, with two participants per team.

The event consisted of three individual rounds, followed by a semi-final round, and a championship game.

Sponsorships were $100 for a team, $150 for a stake, $50 per wicket and fields are $250.

Ms. Perkin's son, Tim Perkins, participated in the event, and joked it was the "first time he has not been worried about getting chewed out for being late."

"Ms. Lomax has done a great job today and everything is just working out today," said Perkins.

Main Street Director and event participant Bo Ellis said he considered Ms. Perkins one of his best friends, and the tournament was a "true testament to what she was about."

"She was all about making the community a better place, and she was a teacher in Christ, fellowship, life and music," added Ellis.

A very active member of the community, Ms. Perkins was a member of many boards and committees, and her hard work in the community was always appreciated by sponsors who sought to give back to her vision with the Friends.

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