Kenai Central High School could host future state soccer, football and track tournaments starting next school year, thanks in part to a grant that will overhaul its facilities, KCHS Principal Alan Fields said.
“(It offers) more opportunities for kids in our community, and that’s what our school’s about,” Fields said.
The $200,000 U.S. Soccer Foundation will help fund a turf replacement of the current grass soccer and football field and the addition of a rubberized track to replace the existing asphalt track, Fields said.
The new turf field will extend KCHS’s soccer and football season by two months and result in fewer injuries, Kenai Mayor Pat Porter said. The new track will remove the threat of frost heaves, a persistent problem with the current track, Fields said.
Porter said the city will complete the field and track upgrades by August.
The upgrades will introduce more games and outside families to the community, Fields said. He said it will bring in money because Anchorage families will buy from stores and stay in hotels in the city.
Currently KCHS is searching for additional funding for field lighting. Fields said the ability to light the fields would allow KCHS to host Friday night and weekend games.
“It’s going to touch our youth,” Porter said, “and if we don’t keep out kids busy we’re going to have problems down the line.”
It is an investment in the community, she said.
Dan Schwartz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org