Glenelg again plugs in drive to get lights on football field

February 09, 1993|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,Staff Writer

When Glenelg's football team challenged for the county title and made the playoffs last fall for the first time in seven years, it signaled a rebirth of the school's athletic program.

Teachers, coaches and parents at Glenelg have initiated another revival. They are organizing a drive to have lights installed at the school's football field.

An effort to bring lights to the school failed six years ago, but Glenelg principal Jim McGregor thinks the time is right to pursue the project again. So do the coaches and parents who have formed four committees to come up with a plan.

The school expects to submit a detailed proposal to associate superintendent James McGowan and instructional director Daniel Jett next month, and hopes to have the idea considered by superintendent Michael Hickey and the school board in the spring.

"We're at the feeling-out stage right now. We're at the stage bTC where we've got a lot of enthusiasm from parents and coaches," McGregor said. "The community at Glenelg really is dead serious about getting lights. It's not just lip service. If we can prove to the board that we're serious, then it makes sense to move ahead."

"If I didn't think the school community was behind it, I wouldn't bother with it," said Glenelg athletic director Mike Williams. "I think we have a pretty good plan. We're going to approach it reasonably, and we're going to go through the proper chain of command."

The committees are addressing four concerns.

The fund-raising committee is examining ways to raise the estimated $70,000 for installation of lights. The committee is looking into soliciting big business, local businesses and alumni for donations.

The construction committee will concentrate on choosing a contractor to install the lights and will address parking problems that Friday night football games could create. Glenelg has limited parking space at its Saturday afternoon games.

The environmental impact and socialization committees will examine the impact that night football and other sports -- such as lacrosse and soccer -- could have on the immediate neighborhood. Potential crowd and security problems also will be examined. Questionnaires will be distributed throughout the school and to area residents to gauge their support for lights.

"I think we've got a good organization going right now," said Chuck Guerra, the vice president of Glenelg's Boosters Club and chairman of the fund-raising committee. "For this western portion of the county, Glenelg High School is a center of activity. I think the community is going to like it [lights]."

McGregor thinks the time is ripe for Glenelg to overcome the objections of the school board, which turned down the school's request for lights in 1987. Howard, the first high school built in the county, is the only school with lights.

"For Glenelg, it [football] is kind of like the hub of the community," McGregor said.

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