“There is no changing the name of War Memorial Stadium, period.”
Those were the first words from Mayfield Independent Schools Superintendent Joe Henderson Tuesday night at the district’s school board meeting regarding discussions to look at raising revenue for needed improvements at the 71-year-old football stadium.
While there is no decision on the matter, Henderson simply said there had been talk on how to fund upgrades to the locker room areas’ showers and heating, as well as accommodations for the general public, including bathroom facilities.
“Obviously our stadium is very old, our stadium needs some work done,” he told the school board members. “One of the discussions was that there have been several districts to sell naming rights to stadiums, fields and arenas.”
McCracken County High School is one such campus with several athletic venues branded with business names. The football stadium is named Marquette Stadium and its basketball gym is the Strawberry Hills Pharmacy Arena.
Henderson said he has contacted McCracken County on how their contract applications are worded. He added that the district’s other sports facilities are currently in good shape and there are no plans to look at naming rights.
But no matter what transpires, he reiterated the venue would not see War Memorial Stadium removed as its name.
“We’re not going to take War Memorial Stadium off,” Henderson said. “Anybody would be a fool to try and change history of that stadium and take War Memorial off that.”
He added that he would be meeting with the Mayfield Parks and Recreations Board today (Wednesday) to discuss the lease with the City of Mayfield and update some wording.
Among approvals the board made Tuesday was naming Bo Neely the school board’s attorney for 2020, selling surplus high jump equipment, and renewing with Roberts Insurance for the 2020-21 student accident policy.
Henderson explained the policy would see a $2,000 increase based on the past three years of claims, which had totaled $40,000.
Consent agenda items, including Mayfield High School baseball trips to Dyersburg and Union City, Tennessee, an FBLA state leadership conference trip to Louisville, MHS state track and field championship trip in June, and state Deaf and Hard of Hearing Spelling Bee Championship trip to Elizabethtown, were approved, along with treasurer’s report, bills and salaries, and personnel.
The board opened with special recognition for members of the Mayfield Elementary School cheer squad, which recently won a National Cheerleader Association national championship in Texas, and recognized MES’s Amy Forsee and Beverly Dail, Mayfield Middle School’s Rachel Hughes, and Mayfield High School’s Paula Pedley.