2018-03-10 / Featured

Police, seniors pair off to practice cornhole skills

By Anna Fletcher
Courier-Times Staff Writer


Evanice Humphrey, left, and Roxboro police Lt. Chris Dickerson, second from left, play a game of cornhole against Vargie Watson, right, and Cale Mizelle at the senior center. 
ANNA FLETCHER | courier-times Evanice Humphrey, left, and Roxboro police Lt. Chris Dickerson, second from left, play a game of cornhole against Vargie Watson, right, and Cale Mizelle at the senior center. ANNA FLETCHER | courier-times Roxboro police officers stopped by the local senior center for a little cornhole on Friday, tossing red and blue beanbags across the floor of the exercise room toward a pair of American flag-themed boards.

Patrol Lt. Chris Dickerson and Det. Jason Howe dropped in on the second practice of the center’s 13-member cornhole team, which formed earlier this month, says Lisa Mizelle, the center’s activity and volunteer coordinator.

The team had its first practice on Monday at the Huck Sansbury gymnasium, and it has three more practices scheduled before games begin at the end of the month.

“We’ll probably practice at least once a week, if we can,” Mizelle said. “And then we’ll continue on until May, when the games are wrapping up.”

The cornhole team consists of 11 women and two men – all aged 50 and older.

“Usually this is a male sport; but, here at the senior center, the ladies like it too,” Mizelle said.

The big event is a competition in Vance County on May 3, she says, where the team will play teams from four other counties: Vance, Granville, Warren and Franklin.

“The games are sanctioned by the North Carolina Senior Games,” she said. “And so we do have a set of rules that we have to play by.”

These rules include playing to 21 points and receiving fouls for infractions, such as a thrower letting their toe pass the front end of the board. Mizelle decided to employ the police department’s cornhole expertise, inviting them to play at Friday’s practice.

“They’re very community oriented, so I invited them to come and assist,” she said. “I know that they have some really good players on the force; and I thought it’d be kind of fun to ‘play with a cop.’ I’ve seen around town, they’re also having ‘coffee with a cop,’ so I thought, you know, ‘cornhole with a cop’ would also be fun.”

The police department attends various community events, according to Howe, and the cornhole practice, in particular, caught his attention.

“We usually get an email [about a community event] to see if anyone is interested in doing that,” he said “They vary from talking to the school groups or going to the senior center. So I saw that email and saw cornhole on there. Chris and I, we’re both avid cornhole players, and we couldn’t pass up an opportunity… to go play.”

The practice ended with a special three-game match between the officers and the “winners” of the team practice, Evanice Humphrey and Don Shotwell.

“The first game didn’t go so well,” Howe said. “We were up 20 to five, and they came back to beat us.”

The rally proved to over-fatigue the senior athletes, though, with the next two games piling up on the officers’ side of the ledger. However, the enthusiasm never dwindled, says the center’s director Maynell Harper.

“We might keep the games going every Friday, since it seemed to be a big hit,” she said. “And also since that’s the only day we have that room free.”

Return to top