Paly gym timeline | March 7, 2014 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Cover Story - March 7, 2014

Paly gym timeline

Dec. 24, 1918: Opening of the new Palo Alto High School takes place. The theater had no seats and doubled as a gym.

1923: Citizens overwhelmingly approve a $150,000 bond measure for Paly. Trustees select 1911 graduate and architect Birge Clark to design the remaining buildings in original plan, including the gym.

April 1928: Clark begins drawing up plans for the gym, with construction to take place over the next year, approximately.

1929: More than 2,500 people attend the dedication of the new gym and the first basketball game ever played there, against Sequoia. The gym was dedicated to coach and administrator George Stewart, a World War I veteran.

1938: The Viking becomes the school mascot.

1953: George Stewart, the gym's namesake, dies. Then-Paly Principal Ivan Linder said: "I have never had a student complain of unfair treatment by him. These students received from him a sort of fusion of affection and justice, a quality so rare that our language contains no name for it."

Jan. 5, 1964: The Harlem Globetrotters, then known as the Harlem Stars, play in the gym against the Palo Alto All-Stars, a team made up of "ex-basketball greats since 1959." (Photo: Yes)

1967: In the 1967 SPAL Championship game, Mark Daley ('68) makes two free throws in the final minute to win the game 70-68 against the Sequoia Redwoods. The season is one of Coach Clem Wiser's best, finishing 27-2.

1977: Dave Schultz becomes the first Palo Alto wrestler to win a state title by taking the 162-pound division.

1978: Mark Schultz becomes the second Paly wrestler to win a state championship, following in his brother's footsteps while winning at 154 pounds.

1991: Clem Wiser, head basketball coach at Paly from 1955 to 1984 and athletic director from 1984 to 1990, is elected into the California Coaches' Hall of Fame.

March 20, 1993: Palo Alto makes boys' basketball history by completing a 31-0 season with a 79-59 upset of Morningside in the CIF Division III state championship game at the Oakland Coliseum. Captain Dave Weaver scores 46 points against Los Altos during league play to set a still-standing school record for a single game.

1993: John Barrette, who coached the 1993 championship team, was named California State boys basketball Coach of the Year. With Barrette at the helm, Paly had placed among the top five in CCS every year since 1987.

March 18, 2006: Jeremy Lin leads Paly to a state title in 2006.

June 3, 2008: School district voters overwhelmingly pass a $378 million "Strong Schools" bond to modernize and expand capacity on school campuses. A total $5.47 million is earmarked for gym improvements.

Dec. 4, 2010: Palo Alto girls win the 2-1- state volleyball title.

March 5, 2011: Palo Alto girls win their Central Coast Section basketball title with a 54-44 win over rival Gunn.

Dec. 3, 2011: Palo Alto girls win their second straight CIF Division I state volleyball title with a 3-2 win over Marymount to finish off a 36-3 season.

February 2013: School officials say an anonymous Palo Alto family is considering a major donation to transform Paly's athletic facilities. The amount donated by the three-generation Paly family is pegged at approximately $20 million, the largest single gift in school history.

March 2013: The family of commercial real estate developer Richard Peery, a Paly graduate whose children and grandchildren also have attended Paly, is revealed as the anonymous donor. "It's not really about sports or athletics per se," son Dave Peery said. "This is much more about providing balance in the lives of our busy youth."

Jan. 24, 2014: The last home wrestling match is held in the gym. While it would have been fitting for the host Vikings to go out with a bang, Gunn High School snagged a 46-34 triumph.

Feb. 27, 2014: Palo Alto defeats Sequoia, 61-49, in a CCS Division I second-round boys' basketball playoff game, marking the final basketball game ever to be played in the Paly gym.

March 16, 2014: Students and community members will gather to bid farewell to the old gym, slated for demolition sometime after graduation. For more information about this event, go to


Posted by Jim Schamber, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 5:59 am

In 1967, Sequoia was the Cherokees

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