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Artwork in restaurant honors DHS football team

The rewards of success have been coming in leaps and bounds for the Demopolis High School football team after winning this year’s Class 5A championship.

Smokin’ Jack’s restaurant owner Jacky Poole asked local artist Tina Rivas to paint a sign on his wall honoring the team, and had the players, coaches and staff autograph the sign. Once everyone has autographed the sign, Rivas will place a numerical roster along the bottom of the sign.

“When the team won the state championship, I wanted to do something to honor the team,” Poole said. “I already had a bunch of pictures from newspaper clippings along the wall, and I called it ‘The Wall of Fame.’ I called Tina, and she said she’d draw it up there for me. Hopefully, they’ll be able to come back in here when they’ve grown up and be able to see it.”

Rivas took the logo used on the championship sweatshirts being sold by the school on Friday as the centerpiece for the sign. She had a photo of the logo on her cell phone and drew it on the wall freehand.

“I actually have had Angela Jones and Matt Allred and a friend of his, Alyssa, assist me on different stages of this,” Rivas said. “It was a lot of hours. I took the logo the school was using on the sweatshirts and got my ideas together, and this is what I came up with.”

The artwork takes up a good portion of the back wall at Smokin’ Jack’s, and some of the players needed a ladder to sign their names on it.

“This is awesome,” said DHS head coach Tom Causey. “This is the kind of thing that this town has been doing for us; it’s such great support. Our kids have worked so hard. This is amazing!

“Our guys have worked so hard, and people like Jacky Poole have done a great job of patting them on the back and making them feel special. It’s been really, really nice.”