In the heart of South Carolina there is a small community known as Langley. The people of this area are a close knit group, as any smaller town might be. South Carolina is known for its hospitality and friendly folk. This is, of course, the condition of Langley. But, in Langley, there is one big difference. You had better be a Midland Valley High School Mustangs fan, because in Langley, football reigns supreme.
Langley is an unincorporated town, but if you visit the Old Langley Cemetery, you will see that this has been a beloved home since the 1800’s. There is a great support group of residents and relatives, businesses and churches. They are famous for the Sweet Potato Festival they hold each year in October.
The Midland Valley High School is a major part of the community focus. Dr. Doris Hickson, Principal, is adamant about balancing a good learning curriculum with the team playing attitude of sports. In football, they have a standard team, JV Football and Powderpuff Football. A feather in this school’s cap for offering a multitude of choices for both boys and girls. Every year, the entire town rallies behind the Mustangs, the school football team. The colors of orange and blue are displayed on banners, shirts and sweatshirts. The games are a gala event for the entire town. The fanfare and pageantry that accompanies a typical game might as well be a competition between two major teams. Fans gather, music plays and football scoreboards and prepped and ready. The local businesses have been contacted months ahead to make sure that their names and logos appear on the football scoreboards. There is a sense of pride and camaraderie in making sure that everyone knows who is supporting the team.
The deep rooted history and sense of community that is found in South Carolina is transferred to every football game that is played. Whether a home or away game, the town makes sure that all can attend. There is always a sense of electric excitement, even before the game. People are alive with the anticipation of the first kick. Looking around the stands you will see teachers, school staff, supportive parents and fellow students. The game is as serious as the focus. The Mustangs play with an intent to win and know that they have their family and friends around them for support.
The community of Langley is a glimpse of the type of town that many of us wish we had grown up in. The people care for each other and are there for each other. They monitor the kids in both academia as well as the learning lessons they will need in life. This is complimented by the beauty of the countryside and all that nature brings to them combined with the sturdy roots of the founding heritage that they share. A football game at Midland Valley High School brings a smile to your face and you can’t help being caught up in the excitement.