Sabetha football field features new press box
Years of fundraising and planning by the Sabetha Booster Club have finally paid off, as the new press box at Sabetha High School was used for the first time last week. The new press box was approved by the school board in December 2017.
The new press box now stands in the same place as the old one, which was built in the 1970s. According to Sabetha Athletic Director Scott Burger, this was much needed upgrade for multiple reasons.
“The press box was old and depleted,” he said. “Safety issues were coming into play. The old one had a ladder, and it was very dangerous climbing it. Also the foundation was not very good.”
Burger explained that the new press box will be a huge benefit for Sabetha athletics, as well as visitors, such as media and opposing coaches.
“There is more room [in the press box] and the conditions will be better,” he said. “It will be nicer for those who come to put our games on the radio and those who videotape the games.”
Burger also emphasized that the press box is not just for Sabetha High School football.
“It will be used for track events and Sabetha Middle School events, as well as little kids’ football and pep rallies,” he said.
The new three-story press box has many new features such as more room, stairs and a new sound system.
According to Burger, there is a designated purpose for each level in the layout for the new press box, which is four feet wider than the previous one.
The first floor will be storage, where paint equipment and other sports related equipment will be stored. The second floor will be for media, along with those who are operating the scoreboard.
“The second floor will have more room and will be able to seat more people,” Burger said.
The third level – which is now enclosed – is designated for film crews and coaching purposes.
In addition to more room, the new press box also includes a top-of-the-line sound system.
“When the guy who was installing the new sound system came to check it out, he said it was one of the oldest system he had seen,” Burger said.
The old system had speakers just inside the press box and had 150 amps. The new one will be 8,000 amps, and with the speakers placed on the scoreboard instead of in the press box, the sound should be even across the entire field.
“The sound system will have the greatest benefits for coaches, press and those that run the events,” Burger said.
Out of all the new features, Burger said, one definitely tops the others.
“The best feature is definitely having stairs,” he said.
The cost of the new press box was a financial collaboration between USD 113 and the Sabetha Booster Club, through donations and advertising.
In December 2017, the school board voted 5-2 to help fund half of the project, up to but not exceeding $60,000.
In March 2018, Edelmans Home Center submitted a bid for the project with the total cost coming to $95,702, not including a sound system, which made the school district’s portion only $47,851.
In July 2018, the cost of the sound system was presented to the school board in the amount of $19,600.13, which the booster club asked the school board to pay half. This would brought the total cost for the school district to $57,651.
According to Burger, the total cost came out at approximately $125,000 after they completed the electrical and the framing for the speakers on the score board.
In addition to the school district funding part of the project, seven other sponsors helped make this project a success. Those sponsors are United Bank and Trust, Morrill and Janes Bank, Community National Bank, Saylor Insurance, Aberle Ford, J Six Farms and Edelmans Home Center. These businesses will have advertising signs displayed on the press box, with signs made through local business Wildwood Creations.
While the press box is currently being used, there are still a few finishing touches that need to be completed.
Burger said the flooring inside the press box still needs completed. Additionally, the asphalt around the press box will be replaced with cement.