The Times West Virginian

Opinion

September 20, 2013

Contributions will keep boosting work under way at East-West Stadium

Any person in Marion County who hasn’t visited East-West Stadium over the past few years will be more than pleasantly surprised if they would see it now.

And if they examine that picture on Page 1 of the Times West Virginian Thursday, they can clearly see two of the things that have been greatly improved.

The first set of restored bleachers was completed this summer, and the Field Turf has been in place for several years.

These improvements do not come cheaply.

Each of  the 10 sets of bleachers costs approximately $38,000 to complete. That’s why the first section of restored bleachers is those on the 50-yard line. And the good news is the East-West Stadium Committee has enough funding to complete two more sections. These extra funds were boosted by a $35,000 Bowers grant, which was recently awarded to the committee for the project.

The East-West Stadium Committee has numerous accomplishments to its credit. The other improvements, which the committee has been doing as money allows, include:

• Restored rest rooms.

• The replacement of the concession stand roof.

• A reconfigured press box.

• A new and very large scoreboard.

• The installation of hand rails.

• New front doors.

• New lighting.

• Refurbished ticket booths.

* New concrete sidewalks.

• Washing of the facility’s stone walls.

• A new historic gate.

These improvements cannot be made without additional fundings.

The East-West Stadium Committee, headed by Nancy Bickerstaff, is looking ahead to replacing the modern Field Turf, which comes at the fancy price of $500,000. But as Bickerstaff points out, “it’s going to be a little while before we get there because we have to take everything one project at a time.”

She said replacing the Field Turf should come next.

Just about everybody in Marion County has some fond memories of East-West Stadium, whether they were football players, soccer players, lacrosse players, band members, cheerleaders, track performers, fans or just people using the stadium track to get their exercise in. And many people from nearby cities and towns visit the stadium to see their teams in action here.

The Times West Virginian urges everyone who can make a donation to mail a contribution to the Board of Education, 100 Gaston Ave., Fairmont, WV 26554, Attention Kim Wade. And note the check is a contribution for East-West Stadium.

Your contributions are needed to keep these fond memories continuing for years to come at one of the most well-known high school stadiums in West Virginia.

We should want East-West Stadium to be one for which everyone can be proud, but it’s going to take a little giving on everyone’s part to insure that this happens.

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