Three years after FHH’s turf field was put in, the Board of Education (BOE) approved turf fields for FHC and FHN. Each school’s stadium field will be renovated and switched to turf. This will allow the sports teams to play on the field despite rain.
“I’m not too happy because the rubber pellets are harder than regular grass, but it’s better than the fields we have because when it rains, it won’t get too muddy,” Varsity player and junior Danny Goggin said.
The FHN football team is looking forward to a turf field because the boys won’t have to worry as much about slipping on the field, according to Varsity player and junior Kyle Pratt.
“In the past, the field wasn’t taken care of properly,” Pratt said. “So far, the last three seasons, we’ve had loose dirt that is hard to play on because during the game it tears up. The cleats tear it up so much that it just becomes a bucket of mud.”
Head Coach Brandon Gregory thinks the new fields will help tighten the way the team plays.
“It’ll affect us in a number of ways,” Gregory said. “How we run plays; we run a spread offense. On Friday nights, with the weather, the field won’t be as wet and bad. There won’t be sloppy play.”
The money for the stadium turf fields came about when various construction projects, such as the expansion of Daniel Boone Elementary, were finished under budget. According to President of the BOE Marty Hodits, the turf fields were the next priority on the Board’s list and the Board approved them under the recommendation of Chief Financial Officer Kevin Supple and Superintendent Pam Sloan.
“We promised both schools and the community that if we had enough of the bond left over, we would provide the fields to both schools,” Hodits said. “Instead of $14,000 we thought we’d have, we ended up with about $1.4 million extra.”
The District hopes to have the fields finished over the winter season or the next summer. As long as the installation of the fields does not interfere with spring sports, such as girls Soccer, they will be finished this winter. However, if putting the fields in would interrupt spring sports, they will wait until this summer to be installed. FHN Activities Director Mike Janes wants the fields in by Black and Gold Day, expected to be Aug. 17, 2013, at the latest.
“I think it’s important for a positive image of our school,” Janes said. “I think it’s important to our athletes to give them a safe playing surface in all weather conditions. It’s probably safer to play on turf than on mud.”
The new turf fields won’t just benefit sports teams. According to Janes, P.E. classes will be held outdoors more often, and students will be able to utilize the field for more activities.
“I think more kids involved with activities will be able to use it,” Janes said. “From sports to band to PE classes, right now, the turf is going to be able to be used as a classroom. I think you’re going to see more kids using it.”