No offense to Waterloo, Iowa.
But it’s not exactly a destination for cross-country travelers who are seeking summertime curiosities and thrills.
Enka wrestling coach Mark Harris would beg to differ.
Harris and his family visited the National Wrestling Hall of Fame’s Dan Gable Museum recently and it set into motion an admitted “serendipitous” chain of events.
Now the traditional navy Jets singlet with “Enka” stamped across it in white lettering is on display at the hall of fame. It is housed in a wing devoted to high school and college jerseys.
“It never hurts to ask and knowing the right person helps sometimes,” Harris joked Monday.
“The hall of fame is one of those places that a lot of wrestling families go to see. While we were there, I noticed that there were a few high school singlets on display. (Eblen Charities CEO and national hall of fame board member Bill Murdock) happened to call while I was there. I asked how we could make it happen and he said ‘Bring me one and we’ll get it up.'”
Harris hasn’t seen the Enka singlet hanging in person, but received a photo from Murdock.
“In my mind, I can see me taking a group of wrestlers up there to see it one day,” Harris said.
“And I’m sure that someone (associated with Enka wrestling) will get to see it firsthand and let me know.”
Murdock is credited with starting the nationwide “Headlock on Hunger” campaign. Harris believes that last season’s Enka Duals tournament was the first event in which donations were received for the food-donation cause. It has since taken off with the help of former WWE announcer Jim Ross and Asheville resident Adam Copeland (known to wrestling audiences as “Edge”) who did recent personal appearances in Western North Carolina.
Harris is married to Asheville mayor Esther Manheimer and has been the Jets wrestling coach since 2002. Enka has won 12 consecutive MAC championships in wrestling, which is a school record. Rising sophomore Phil Daub became the first-ever Jets freshman to win his weight class (106 pounds) at last winter’s NCHSAA 3-A tournament.