(Posted May 14, 2021)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
London City Schools is about to score big when it comes to keeping score.
On May 10, the school board approved the purchase of four new scoreboards for the high school, including video scoreboards for Bowlus Field and Chadwell Gymnasium and new scoreboards for the varsity softball and baseball fields. The boards will be installed and operational in time for the start of the fall sports season.
Donations are covering the majority of the project’s $350,000 cost. As was done with the synthetic turf project at Bowlus Field five years ago, organizers are securing commitments from private donors for payment over the next five years. The donations will go to the school district which is fronting the cost of the scoreboards. To date, donors have committed approximately $250,000 to the project.
A video scoreboard measuring 17 feet tall by 26 feet wide will replace the existing scoreboard at the north end of Bowlus Field. The board at the south end of the stadium will remain as-is.
A video scoreboard measuring 8 feet tall by 12 feet wide will replace the existing scoreboard in Chadwell Gymnasium.
The new boards at the softball and baseball fields will be traditional boards, not video boards.
Superintendent Dr. Lou Kramer is excited about the project’s potential on two fronts, the first being student involvement and recognition and the second being advertising revenue.
Starting next school year, the video boards will be used to show players, team introductions, and highlights, along with other school district content, at football, soccer, track and field, basketball and volleyball games, meets and matches. Students will create the content and control the boards.
“The content and graphics for each event will be developed by the district’s sports management and broadcast classes,” Kramer reported in his superintendent’s blog. “The boards will be operated by students who participate in the district’s internship program with oversight by a district-appointed advisor.”
As the program develops, the plan is to integrate real-time highlights.
The marketing piece involves paid advertising on the boards.
“We see this as a new revenue source moving forward. We can put those revenues back into upgrading and maintaining our athletics facilities. That way we don’t have to use as much of our general fund for those expenses,” Kramer said.
Anyone interested in making a donation to the scoreboards project or more information about advertising opportunities can contact Jimmy Wolverton, athletic director, at email@example.com or (740) 852-5705.
The school district hopes to transfer the outgoing scoreboard from the stadium to the London Youth Football & Cheer organization for possible installation at Van Kanel Field. They are working with the city of London for possible transfer of the gym scoreboard to the London Community Center. The district does not have firm plans for the fate of the softball and baseball boards.