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School Board weighs sports facility options

June 28, 2007|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Where the Trojan baseball team will play, how many sports can fit on Trojan Stadium's field and who should be allowed to play all were discussed at Wednesday's Chambersburg School Board meeting.

Greene Township Supervisor Todd Burns made a pitch for the Chambersburg Area Senior High School baseball team playing at the municipal park being built near Scotland, Pa. The township is looking for a 10- to 15-year renewable lease for about $15,000 per year and indexed for inflation.

At 320 feet down the left and right field lines and 400 feet to deep center field, the field has Major League Baseball dimensions, Burns said. There also is a smaller field that could be included in an agreement for junior varsity practice, he said.

The field will have a two-story building for press, concessions, bathrooms and storage, a sprinkler system, dugouts, batting cages, bleacher seating for 900 and a "viewing hill" around the outfield, Burns said. There presently are no plans for lights, which could cost the township up to $100,000 to install, he said.

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The township will maintain the field and does not want a cut from concession and ticket sales, Burns said. The field will be ready for play next spring, he said.

The district is in talks with Chambersburg about improving Henninger Field, where the Trojans now play. Superintendent Joseph Padasak said the field might need $750,000 in improvements, some of it to be paid by the district, but the borough has not made a proposal to the district.

The board voted to ask the borough for a proposal by its July 25 meeting, with a decision on which field to use coming in August.

Trojan Stadium's artificial turf is lined for football, soccer and field hockey, but the boys' lacrosse team also wants to play some of its games at the $6.5 million stadium. The board discussed how best to line the field - with inlaid stripes, paint or chalk lines.

"When you get to the fourth and fifth sport, it gets pretty busy," Jerry Harper of IC Improvements said of the overlapping playing field lines. Harper, whose company installed the turf, recommended inlaid lines rather than paint, which could damage the surface, or chalk, which could damage the drainage system.

The board voted to go with paint.

Harper said if the district gets a girls' lacrosse team, Title IX rules will require the field be lined for that sport, which has different dimensions than boys' lacrosse.

Several months ago, the board tabled action on adopting stricter eligibility standards for sports and extracurricular activities. The board discussed, but did not act on the policy, in part because software to track grades is not ready.

"We all have reservations about implementing this at this point," Board President Thomas Orndorf said.

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