Weather causing delays in MHS football stadium construction

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The contingency plan has been publically released now that it appears Minden High School’s football stadium may not be complete by Sept. 1.

At Monday’s Webster Parish School Board meeting, newly named MHS Principal Becky Wilson said if the stadium cannot be used in the school’s first game against the Haughton Buccaneers, then the game will be moved to Haughton High School where ticket sales will be split but the game will be considered Haughton’s home game.

“This would essentially switch the contract allowing Minden High School to have the Haughton home game during the 2018 season,” she said. “However, both schools have agreed to split the ticket gate for the 2017 and 2018 games.”

If they still cannot play at The Pit against the Haynesville Tors on Sept. 8, then the game will be played in Haynesville as a Haynesville home game. Wilson said the Tors will play The Tide at The Pit during the 2018 football season as a MHS home game. The ticket gate will not be split for these games.

Wilson said they are optimistic about playing at The Pit for the Sept. 8 game, but a few things would have to be done if the field is complete but not concessions. The restrooms are in the same building as the new concession stand, which means portable toilets will have to be rented for the game.

David Walker, with Walker Construction, said with all the rain over the last two months, it’s been a setback for ongoing work.

“As of (Monday), we were supposed to set posts, pour concrete and put the sod out, but now that’s all out,” Walker said. “As of this morning, I’d set Sept. 15 as the day we could turn over the football field so the players could play on it.”

The completion of the concessions building has been set for around Oct. 1.

The contractual completion date is Nov. 4, but it won’t take them that long, he said.

“There’s no way it will take that long, but with this rain, there’s just no way we can be out there right now,” Walker said.

About 26 rain days were in the contract, with 54 days added due to change in the work.

Walker said if the rain holds off the rest of this week and it begins to dry out, they could still make the Sept. 15 target.

The Pit was condemned in 2016 following the torrential flooding that March. The grandstands were condemned when the foundation washed away from three of the pilings holding up one section.

The entire stadium has been under construction as the Pit undergoes renovations that include a brand new concessions building with restrooms, a playing field raised approximately 4 feet above flood level, a new ticket booth, press box and fencing.

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