RIPLEY - Main Street Ripley's 15th annual meeting this month will be featuring hometown TV sportscaster Mark Martin.
The event is scheduled at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16, at the Alpine Theatre. The public is invited and refreshments will be served. RSVP to Paula Casto, program director, at 304-372-1637.
Martin is a Ripley area native and resident who is the sports director of WCHS TV and WVAH TV in Charleston and a regular contributor to Jackson Newspapers. He has won numerous awards for his television work, including a regional Emmy and West Virginia Sportscaster of the Year.
"I've been very fortunate," said Martin. "There is a limited job market for this industry. To be in a situation where I can do what I enjoy doing and still live in a town like Ripley has been great."
He also enjoys writing. Martin authored the book "Unfulfilled Dream," detailing the life story of Ripley's Paul Lanham as he progressed from being a student athlete and head football coach at his alma mater to embarking on a coaching career in the National Football League.
A graduate of Ripley High School, Martin furthered his education at Marietta College. He is a Sunday school teacher at Calvary United Methodist Church and an inductee in the RHS Football Hall of Fame. He is married to the former Lisa Cunningham.
Ripley has been involved with the Main Street structure since 1998. It is one of 12 accredited programs in the state affiliated with the West Virginia Development Office and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, led by State Coordinator Marsha Humphrey of Ripley. The effort is dedicated to revitalizing downtown business districts.
The program involves community volunteers serving on four basic committees: Organization, Economic Restructuring, Design and Promotion. In addition, Main Street Ripley has an Alpine Committee which assists with events at the renovated historic theatre.
"We welcome civic-minded people who are interested in joining the organization," said Casto.
Main Street Ripley will be hosting the Tribute Quartet 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, at the Ripley High Auditorium. The award-winning gospel group features Jackson County native Gary Casto. Tickets are $15 in advance, available at www.mainstreetripley.org , the Carson Corner Professional Building in downtown Ripley, or $20 at the door.