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Chimes Ring Out Again as ABAC Graduates Enter New Phase of Their Lives

TIFTON— When the graduates of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College streamed out of Gressette Gym on Thursday after the fall commencement ceremony, their happy smiles grew even bigger when they heard the chimes from the Chapel of All Faiths serenading them on their accomplishments.

Silenced for the past five years due to technical problems, the chimes rang out loud and clear on a crisp blue-sky day as the graduates celebrated with their parents. ABAC Media Productions Coordinator Matthew Reid said it has been quite a process to restore the beautiful music from the majestic bell tower of the Chapel.

“It couldn’t have happened without everyone’s commitment and teamwork,” Reid said. “ChimeMaster from Atlanta made sure the installation went just fine.”

Reid said the new digital system features a high definition speaker that will produce a deeper sound throughout the front of the campus.

“There are currently 5,000 song options, and we have the ability to add an additional 1,000 more,” Reid said. “It is truly a new technology to enhance an old system. We plan to ring the chimes on the hour just as they did when the Chapel opened.”

Reid said Vice President for Finance and Operations Paul Willis was instrumental in bringing the project to fruition along with Arts Connection Director Wayne Jones, Department of Fine Arts Head Susan Roe, and Chief Development Officer Deidre Martin.

“Thank also to everyone at Sodexo for their hard work, even when weather and insect conditions weren’t favorable,” Reid said. “A special thank-you should go to ChimeMaster representative Timothy Eachus for his multiple trips up the tower to make sure the speaker was placed and working properly.”

Martin said restoring the chimes is only one step in a larger improvement plan for the Chapel in the coming year. Generous donations from alumni and friends led by alumnus Tyron Spearman helped to get the project underway and will provide a jumpstart for the future.

“The Chapel is a popular spot on campus for public events to be held, so to increase functionality and aesthetics, our plan is to upgrade the lighting system, replace the outer protective windows, and update and enhance the Prayer Garden courtyard,” Martin said. “Additional opportunities for our alumni and donors to invest in these efforts will be announced as ABAC moves forward in this process.”

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