The Blaylock Inspirational Oracle, named for South Fulton native Dr. Paul Blaylock, will be dedicated in a 2 p.m. ceremony, Friday, Oct. 20, at the University of Tennessee at Martin. The ceremony will be held between Clement Hall and the Boling University Center on the center’s north patio just below the site. Parking is recommended in either the Boling University Center or Paul Meek Library lots, which is about a three-minute walk to the dedication site. The public is invited.
Blaylock is a 1968 UT Martin graduate who has worked for more than four decades as both a trauma physician and a trial attorney in the Portland, Oregon, area. The structure faces west and is designed as an open-air Greek Parthenon. The oracle will serve as a reflection area for students, alumni and visitors, an outdoor classroom and a meeting space. The space includes a fountain and plaza.
The program will include Dr. Charley Deal, vice chancellor for university advancement, who will welcome attendees and offer introductions. UT Martin Chancellor Yancy Freeman will follow with remarks from the university, and Blaylock will offer comments to close the program. Refreshments will be served following the program.
Ground was broken for the structure during homecoming weekend in October 2021. Some completion work on the structure remains, but dedication attendees and homecoming weekend visitors can view the oracle from just beyond the construction area.
The ceremony will be completed in time for participants to attend a 3 p.m. ceremony to rename the University Village I and II residence buildings for Jessie Arnold Pryor and Harold Conner, two notable figures in the university’s desegregation history. That event will be held near the residence facilities located within walking distance just south of the Blaylock Inspirational Oracle.