Archive for Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Boosters break ground at THS, could be complete by spring 2008

November 20, 2007

Tonganoxie school administrators and community members gathered near Beatty Field on Friday to break ground on a new gateway that will lead to the football stadium.

The Point of Pride project, funded solely by the Tonganoxie High School booster club, will feature a new building that will serve as an entrance to the stadium on the southwest side.

The building, which will be painted to match the existing facilities near the football field, will cost around $15,000, according to THS booster club president Bryan Kemp.

"When you stand in this gravel all night Friday night and you experience this hill, and when you drive by, it's not attractive," Kemp said of the southwest corner. "It can be. Whenever people walk up, we want them to feel good about Tonganoxie High School. We want it to be a feel of walking into a stadium."

The building, which will be 20 feet by 12 feet, will contain an eight-foot hallway. Once people walk through the hallway, ticket counters will be to their right and left before they get to the field.

Kemp said the gateway would also benefit people outside the THS football circle. THS will use the gateway for track events as well.

In addition, future Tonganoxie High graduates will walk through the gateway before they reach the field, as part of the graduation ceremony.

There's a chance the class of 2008 will be the first to walk through the gateway for graduation. Kemp said the completion of the gateway and its surrounding area is slated for the fall of 2008 at the latest. But there's a chance for sooner.

"If it keeps going at the pace it's been going, there's a chance of it being done by the spring," Kemp said. "Of course, that's if the weather holds up."

When the project is complete, the gravel on the southwest entrance corner will be replaced with concrete. The hill that runs down toward the access road to the high school will be leveled out and be handicapped accessible. There will only be a two-foot fall from the track to the access road.

"We will replace the partial grass, weeds, gravel, rock, asphalt and dirt with level concrete," THS athletics director Brandon Parker said. "I think it's great. We won't have water depositing on the track from the hill. It's just going to make a cleaner area for people. They won't have to go through mud if it's raining, and they won't have to be kicking rocks everywhere."

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