The Raytown community takes pride in its football, but it experienced a bit of a conundrum last Friday.
With both high school teams earning the right to host a home playoff game, the district held a doubleheader at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the district stadium at Raytown High.
“We’re finishing it on a big note,” Raytown South coach Nick Adkins said.
But that was the last time that the Bluejays and Cardinals would share the same home field.
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After this season, the Raytown South High School football field will receive the necessary upgrades to be used as a fully functioning home stadium.
“What I hear most (from people) is that it’s about identity,” said Travis Hux, assistant superintendent of support services. “It’s about having a home base to play their games and to call their home.”
Included in the $2.9 million stadium project are a press box, expanded seating, restrooms, a concession stand building and a ticket gate. All these amenities are set on the Raytown South campus about 300 yards from the school.
The upgrades equip the stadium to host soccer and track events as well.
Although the stadium will be the most noticeable piece of a $25 million bond issue that voters passed in April, many infrastructure improvements like plumbing, wiring and technology upgrades to existing buildings were also included across the district.
The bond passed with 73 percent approval. It will not be used toward staff salaries or the general operating budget.
“The advantage goes beyond the stadium,” Hux said. “We have a lot of community organizations that come in and use our facilities.”
Hux also said that the district will not go over the top.
“It’s not going to be an extravagant project,” he said. “It’s going to be nice, but it’s just going to do the things necessary to turn it into a stadium.”
One of the more excited people about the stadium upgrades is Adkins, who’s in his first year as head coach. He thinks the stadium will promote support for the school in the future.
“It gives the kids a little bit of a home feeling, especially the younger ones. Sometimes when we go over to Raytown, it’s like ‘Oh we’ve got to travel,’” he said. “So playing at home and getting some traditions going there will be good.”
Still Adkins, a longtime member of the community, with both his dad and uncles playing at Raytown South, knows this will benefit not only his program, but the rest of the area.
“There’s going to be a lot of great projects for the Raytown School District that come out of that bond,” he said.
A groundbreaking for the stadium was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon. Completion is expected by the summer of 2015.