Center to present painting to former Arkansas coach Nolan Richardson

The newly painted basketball court at the Yvonne Richardson Center

Former Razorback head basketball coach Nolan Richardson will be presented with a portrait of his late daughter Yvonne at a special ceremony on Wednesday, Feb. 27 at the Yvonne Richardson Center.

The painting, commissioned by the center’s board of directors, was created by central Arkansas artist Ann Downs. After the ceremony, it will remain on display at the center.

Yvonne Richardson Center director Tenisha Gist said the board wanted to create a special piece to honor Yvonne’s memory.

“Outside of the naming of the building, there has never been any tangible commemorative art within or outside of the center,” Gist said. “This is a really important event for us.”

Richardson will also be on hand to check out some of the recently completed renovations at the center, including new paint for the gym’s walls and court, new lighting and flooring in the foyer, and new fixtures for the bathrooms.

“Coach Richardson has not been in the building for a couple of years,” Gist said. “I think he will be pleased to see the changes we have made.”

The Yvonne Richardson Center, built in 1996, was named in memory of Yvonne after she died of leukemia in 1987 at the age of 15. The center, located at 240 E. Rock St. in Fayetteville, hosts a variety of community-oriented programs including youth sports camps and youth gardening.

Wednesday’s ceremony begins at 6:30 p.m., and is free and open to the public.