Elkhorn Area High School All Sports Booster Club and School District representatives gather near the entrance to the athletic fields at the high school to officially “break ground” on a fundraising brick paver project. From the left are Tim May, Chris Stebnitz, Kelly Brazer, Shelly Higgins, Jo Ann Schaffer, Bill Trewyn, Ryan Hibl, Mike Datza and Jason Garlock. The project will include this elk statue. (Dave Dresdow photo)

Booster Club hosting a brick fundraiser at outdoor sports complex

By Chris Bennett

Correspondent

The Elkhorn Area High School All-Sports Booster Club is trying to roll out a red carpet – of sorts – at the new outdoor sports complex at the high school.

Fundraising recently commenced to help provide a brick pathway and formal entrance to the school district’s outdoor athletic facilities at the high school.

“The hope is to create that focal point for entrance where you would come to get tickets, but also something that people would see and view whether you were going to tennis or football or soccer, or even driving around the side of the school,” Jon Anzalone said. “We want a large entrance to be a focal point, and draw people to that area.”

Anzalone works for the Elkhorn Area School District as a Community Engagement Coordinator, and also coaches the Elks’ varsity baseball team.

He sat on a committee with School Board member Ed Scarow, Elkhorn All-Sports Booster Club member Chris Stebnitz, school district Business Manager Bill Trewyn and the Elks’ Athletic Director Dan Kiel.

“Chris and Ed kind of took the lead on it and went out and developed that plan and the drawings,” Anzalone said. “They met with the architects and site people to say, ‘Here’s the concept we have – what do you think?’”

Stebnitz said the idea of a brick fundraiser arose early in the process, but the committee pushed for something more.

“We started talking about how this was going to look,” Stebnitz said. “Coming from the design side of things and utilizing the potential of an area, I brought-up the idea of creating an entrance.”

The highlights of the entrance will be bricks that are being sold by the booster club and a large, bronze statue of an elk.

Eppstein Uhen Architects out of Milwaukee is handling the design of the entrance. Bronzeman, based in Westlake Village, Calif., is sculpting the elk.

The bricks come in two sizes and colors – four inches by eight inches in red and 12 inches by 12 inches in beige.

The red bricks cost $50 carved with just text and $75 for text and any artwork. The beige bricks cost $300 carved with just text and $350 if there is artwork.

Booster club president Tim May said July 15 is the deadline for the first installation of bricks. The entry is expected to be complete by the end of summer, but the bricks will be installed in batches to minimize cost. He said deadlines for additional installations will be decided as the project moves along.

The entry way is an extension of the renovation project that started with a $23 million referendum approved by voters in 2016. The referendum funded a host of athletic improvements and additional projects.

“We took what was done with the renovation project and upgrades and wanted to put a small, finishing touch on the entrance to the athletic field, but the project has grown,” May said.

“The (booster) club has been putting pieces into place to get this off the ground and, with the help of the school district, it’s now up and running,” he added.

May said among the many positives about this project is that it doesn’t have to end.

“We think this project can go on indefinitely to allow future families of EAHS to get involved and there are a lot of places where bricks can be placed,” May said.

It’s important to note the cost of the entry way is going to be funded by the booster club. Stebnitz said the district provided a loan to the booster club for construction, but also said the booster club is bound to pay-off the loan. The cost of construction is expected to be about $50,000.

Go to polarengraving.com/elkhornallsportsboosterclub to order a brick or contact May at tavianre@gmail.com for more information.

Editor Heather Ruenz contributed to this story.

 
 

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