LJ: Red Devil fans to stay on concrete stands for another season

July 19, 2000

    [The Lincoln County Board of Education] discussed the fact that the proposed reserved seating section in the new bleachers presently under construction does not exactly coincide with current reserved seating arrangements, making it impossible to move fans to the new stands and give them the same seats.  The reserved section in the new bleachers features 16 rows of 32 seats; whereas, the current reserved section has nine rows of 56 seats.

    After discussing different options at length with Coach [Larry] Campbell, the board decided to leave the reserved seating as it is for the upcoming football season and move to the new stands in 2001.

    "Waiting will give us a year to address the various scenarios we've got and get input from the community -- it will give us time to work out the kinks and decide what we're going to do about bathrooms and a concession stand," said Chairman [Marcene] Powell.

    In his comments, Board Member Sam Thorpe pointed out that the reserved seating issue is very complicated.  "By delaying the move, we will ultimately be able to give fair and equitable treatment to all.  If we rush, we may not be able to consider all factors."

    Concerning the different options, Coach Campbell indicated he had no preference, although he did say he liked having 12-months leeway to accomplish the move instead of three to four weeks.

    The issue will appear on the board's January agenda.

    During the discussion, Chairman Powell expressed concern about how the public will feel about remaining in the old stands for another year.  "People will say, 'Why spend the money if we're not going to use the bleachers?' The truth is we had to have new seats," she said.

    According to Coach Campbell, "The bleachers were waiting for us to hit a lawsuit we couldn't have handled.  There were a number of cracked boards -- how they kept from falling I don't know," he stated.

    It was noted that reserved season tickets will cost $40 each this year because there are six home games.

(JAW's note: The wooden bleachers were built in the late 1960's, with expansion in the 1970's.  The concrete stands were built in 1982.)