Alabaster booster club raising funds for stadium upgrades

Donations of time, money and material over the next few months could lead to upgraded facilities at the Thompson High School football stadium.

The school’s Athletic Booster Club is seeking public aid as it kicks off a fundraiser to update the school’s athletic facilities. Club members are seeking to complete nearly $3 million in renovations to the stadium and surrounding facilities, said booster President Ched Burton.

“The project would benefit every team that uses the stadium, whether it’s baseball practice, soccer, football, track, youth sports or any outdoor activity that happens out there,” said Burton. “Our main focus will be on renovating the stadium, but it will affect that whole area over there.”

The project likely will cost between $2 million and $3 million, and will be funded entirely through private donations, Burton said. Once the funds have been raised, the Mississippi-based EnviroTurf company will oversee the project.

“We plan to take everything down except what are now the home bleachers and the new restrooms,” Burton said. “So it’s really more of a construction project than it is a renovation project.

“We want to build new bleachers, redo the field, track and build a new field house,” Burton added.

The new facilities could allow Alabaster athletes to gain an edge over their Class 6A, Region 6 opponents, the booster president said.

“Our athletes play in the toughest region in the state,” Burton said. “Obviously, we are competing with some of the best high schools in the state.

“Not that I think new facilities will automatically make us better, but I think it could help us retain our great athletes and maybe get some new athletes.”

Booster club members hope to raise the money within four months, Burton said.

“We hope to get the facilities built this spring, and play the first football game on it next year.

“Any material donations we get will definitely help us, because it will take that money off our bottom line,” Burton added. “We will be very grateful for any kind of donation people want to make.”

To volunteer time or material, or to donate to the project, call Burton at 229-6686, or e-mail cburton538@bellsouth.net.