Anyone connected with high school sports in Northern Michigan knows Peter Garthe. The Traverse City resident spends all of his free time — really, almost all of it — attending local high school sporting events. He has spent 35 years as the official scorekeeper for the girls basketball team at his alma mater, Traverse City Central, but spends a significant amount of time attending other sporting events at other schools in Northern Michigan.
Garthe’s milestone 5000th career high school game came Friday night, when he served as the scorekeeper for Central’s girls basketball game against Gaylord. To mark the occasion Central officials brought out a congratulatory cake, a personalized basketball and a signed roster. And, according to local NBC affiliate WPBN, Garthe doesn’t plan to stop showing up at all the local games anytime soon, either.
“I want to achieve my goal, I would like to keep it going,” Garthe told WPBN. “I’ve got six more years before mandatory retirement for my age so I’d like to keep it going.”
What is that goal, you ask? With six years to come, another 1,000 events aren’t entirely out of the question, though potentially a stretch. In the meantime, a more attainable milestone may be hitting the full 5,000 events threshold within the state of Michigan, to make up for events he attended when Traverse Central teams were competing against foes across the border. After Friday, Garthe stands some two years worth of events away.
Two more years of keeping score on the sidelines? No sweat.