The presentation photo of the new Barton College Athletics Trailer includes from left – Patrick Barnes, Jr., Keith Barnes, Dr. Douglas N. Searcy, and Rhine Sharp. Keith Barnes was presented with a Barton College Football Team helmet at the ceremony.
WILSON, N.C. —August 30, 2022 — Barton College recently received a gift-in-kind Athletics Trailer to assist in transporting equipment for future game travel. What began as a casual inquiry about equipment transportation needs for Barton Athletics quickly became a coordinated plan with several donors linking arms to provide integral support.
“This project came about because of communications I received from other universities,” explained Keith Barnes, President of Barnes Transportation Company and a Game Day Sponsor for Barton Football. “North Carolina State University called me about three weeks before their bowl game last year, when they realized their trailer was not California compliant. As a result, they were not allowed to transport their football equipment across the state line with their existing trailer. They called me for some advice and references to help get their team to the bowl game. I also have a friend who has donated and drives the Auburn Tigers truck. So, because I came to understand the special needs of a transportation trailer for athletics programs, I sought out Barton College Board of Trustees member Rhine Sharp, and I let him know that Barnes Transportation would be interested in helping the Barton Football Team in a similar way. And, that’s how the wheels for this project started turning.”
Barnes Transportation Company donated the trailer and oversaw the refurbishing process to prepare it for Barton travel to away games. This refurbishing process was supported by community partners providing paint and labor for the painting of the trailer. And, Joe Jackson, son of A+ Graphics owner Bruce Jackson, donated the production and application of the vinyl graphics on the sides and back of the trailer. In addition, Barnes Transportation also signed a five-year commitment to Barton to provide a truck and driver, as well as the fuel needed, to transport the Athletics Trailer to away games for Barton Football.
Barnes was quick to add, “I don’t consider this as much a donation as I do an opportunity to give back to the community and the school that my wife, my son, and I attended. The Barnes family is a Bulldog family! Go Bulldogs!”
This partnership is an excellent example of community partners coming together to support their hometown college. The trailer, which is now housed at the David S. Hicks Family Sports Center, will help meet a facility need on the operations side of the Barton Athletics Program, while also supporting brand awareness for the College at home and during travel days.
“I am most appreciative of the collective efforts of these members of the community who have come together to support this project,” shared Dr. Douglas N. Searcy, President of Barton College. “The catalysts for this project were Barton trustee Rhine Sharp, chair of our Institutional Advancement Committee on the Board of Trustees, and alumnus/donor Keith Barnes, who had a vision for what an athletics trailer could mean for Barton College. They collaborated with each other, and with other community members, making a collective commitment to bring this idea to reality. The Barton College Athletics Trailer will have a significant impact on our Athletics program.”