Sunday, February 25, 2001

Lights offered to Talawanda

Parents offer to help with $100,000 proposal

By Sue Kiesewetter
Enquirer Contributor

        OXFORD — When Talawanda High School's football team takes to the field next summer, parent Tim Hacker wants to see all the players.

        That's why the Hanover Township man and three other fathers — none with sons playing football — have offered their time and electrical expertise to replace the 100 aging lights at Bowers Field with 63 modern fixtures that will put more light on the field and in the stands.

        Their $18,230 plan is part of a $100,000 recommendation from athletic director Tom Holmes and the district's athletic council that would add 10 coaching positions, limit pay-to-play fees, improve athletic facilities and add teams.

        “We go to all the games. The lighting is awful,” Mr. Hacker said. “It's the style of lighting. It's the age. The new fixtures will provide so much more light with the domes reflecting light onto the fields.”

        New fixtures proposed in Mr. Hacker's plan would also put light into the stands and on the practice field, which is not lit. The work would be headed by Mr. Hacker, Darrell Smith, Paul Kalous and Dave Allen — who work in the electrical field — along with volunteers from the community.

        “I'm really excited about the potential here,” Mr. Holmes said of the plan. “I don't think we're overdoing it. This will put our kids on an even playing field with the other teams in the (Mid-Miami) league. Athletics brings a chemistry to the school that few other programs do.”

        Under the recommendations, coaches would be added to football, ice and field hockey, volleyball, basketball, baseball and softball teams. They also call for the addition of a junior varsity ice hockey team, a freshman volleyball team and a middle school field hockey team. In addition to replacing the lights, Mr. Holmes' plan recommends treating baseball and softball fields annually, reconditioning wrestling mats, adding ventilation to a gymnasium storage room, resurfacing the high school track, repairing a locker room, providing additional athletic equipment storage space at the middle and high schools and purchasing an ice machine or refrigerator at the middle school.


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