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The LEAP Student Blog

Enumclaw HS - Kevin Nelson

Author: Kevin Nelson
Grade: Senior
School: Enumclaw HS
Mascot: Hornets
League: SPSL
Classification: 3A

Enumclaw High School has something it never had before: turf. Last year, the final two home games for the Enumclaw Hornets football team could not be played because the grass field we all once knew as “Pete’s Pool” had turned into a swampy mud bowl from overuse by Green River Community College football as well as Enumclaw’s youth Wolverine and Junior Hornet football teams.

Photos by Jason Anglin Photography
In Enumclaw, we love our football, so the fact that 17 seniors were unable to play their final home games on the field they worked so hard to get to was unacceptable.  Determined to bring in a new turf field, the community had started fundraising for the cause as far back as November 2010.  The city came up with plans to fundraise for the new stadium.  They received a $200,000 grant from the Seattle Seahawks in May that would go toward the nearly 2.5 million dollar synthetic field turf and stadium project, which also planned for new grandstands, locker rooms, concessions, and public restrooms.  They decided to name the new stadium YEAS (Your Enumclaw Area Stadium) and flyers for the YEAS project could be found all over town.

On June 29th, community members, players, coaches and district employees met at Pete’s Pool for a ground-breaking ceremony that beginning the project.  The sound of summer football was in the air at Enumclaw High School’s practice field, and just a couple miles away at Pete’s Pool, the loud sounds of construction work were an everyday occurrence. From morning till dark, Enumclaw community member Carl Saunders and his construction team were on the job working to beat the deadline of the September 2nd home opener against the Yelm Tornadoes.

I love my school and I love my town. I was at the site just about every other day and I was amazed at how much progress could be made in such little time. The grass field we had once known had a crest at mid-field and a slope toward the grand stands along with a slight incline in the southwest corner of the south end zone.  It was covered in soft spots and was just a little sloppy. The scoreboard worked when it felt like it, and overall, it just didn’t feel like we should be calling this our home field even though it gave us an advantage.

Carl Saunders and his team did an amazing job on the turf, and they also added two new bathrooms, and a log cabin-style concession stand located right by the historic student section that literally moves the nearly 80-year-old wooden grandstands.

Finally, September 2nd had come. The field was done and it was a picture perfect night for football. This year, I am announcing the Hornets at the new stadium as part of my senior project on broadcast journalism and play-by-play sports commentary.  Enumclaw fans came out in full force as the stands were packed nearly 45 minutes before kickoff. Enumclaw is special. Enumclaw gets the whole community thing and we do a very good job at it. We are all together, we are all one and just like our football motto “We are Enumclaw.”


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