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Pete’s Pool field gets a $10,000 California gift

The ongoing effort to replace the venerable Pete’s pool football field with a state-of-the-art artificial surface has received a Bay Area boost.

A $10,000 check arrived last week from the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the second-largest gift thus far to Your Enumclaw Area Stadium. The YEAS effort is headed by chairmen John Wise, Chris VanHoof and Rick Bathum.

The $10,000 gift was recommended by Dick and Mary Jo Kovacevich, former Enumclaw residents who wield a bit of influence in the Bay Area. Dick Kovacevich – a standout athlete for the Hornets who was chosen for the EHS Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006 – went on to fill the top spot with the Wells Fargo banking operation.

Those on the YEAS committee envision a modern facility at the Enumclaw Expo Center. The current football field, sporting natural grass and a distinct crown in the center of the field that slopes to both sides, has a certain charm but does not meet current prep expectations. For example, Enumclaw High is not permitted to host postseason games due to its field.

Phase I of the YEAS effort is to see the field replaced with a synthetic surface. Phase II would be to renovate the current grandstands and add seating on the opposite side of the field.

Wise admits it’s a costly project but is encouraged by the community support. Much of the work necessary for Phase I could be accomplished by local contractors who have agreed to donate their time and talents, he said.

The initial price tag for Phase I was approximately $700,000, but that number can be greatly reduced, Wise said, thanks to donated work and a competitive bidding climate.

Still, there’s a long way to go for a committee with about $65,000 in the bank. Mutual of Enumclaw kicked in $50,000 and, aside from the Silicon Valley check, the remainder has come in the form of numerous smaller gifts.

YEAS committee members are now holding their breath, waiting for news from the National Football League. NFL players contribute to a fund that annually awards $200,000 grants to efforts to build or renovate football fields. The committee’s bid packet included a letter of recommendation from the Seattle Seahawks.

A decision on the NFL grants is due any day.

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