Blanchard River Buzz

A blog for rabid sports fans in the Findlay Area. Maintained by Findlay Courier sports writer Jamie Baker. The opinions expressed are my own crazed ramblings and not those of my employer the Findlay Publishing Company and its subsidiaries.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Donnell bids are opened...track stays

Went to the Donnell Stadium bid opening yesterday at the Findlay City Schools administrative offices yesterday.
Never attended a bid opening before so I figured what the hey, it would be a chance for me to learn a little more about the process and find out a little more about the whole Donnell Stadium project since people still aren’t talking.

Here’s some of the story wrote for today’s Courier…

The next step in installing a synthetic turf field at Donnell Stadium has been taken.

Bids on the project from three companies, seeking to replace the current grass field with a new artificial surface, were opened at the Findlay City Schools' administrative offices Thursday afternoon.

Findlay-based contractor Helms & Sons had the lowest base bid for the project at $681,100. Alvada Construction's bid of $685,800 was second and Specialized Construction of Cuyahoga Heights submitted a bid of $759,000.

The estimated cost for the base bids and site improvement, including the synthetic surface, was $780,000.

The Findlay Board of Education is expected to take action to accept or reject the bids at its April 23 meeting.

The Donnell Stadium upgrades will be paid for by the Findlay City Schools, which will be reimbursed for the cost of the entire project by the Donnell Foundation.

Donnell Stadium was built in 1928 and is aesthetically and structurally considered one of the top prep football stadiums in northwest Ohio.

The playing field has had its share of problems in recent years.

The field, which is used by both the Findlay High School and University of Findlay varsity football teams, was unfit to host OHSAA playoff games last fall. The natural grass surface has been replaced or upgraded at least three times since 1986. The last upgrade was in 1999 when a High Performance Gravity (HPG) drainage system was installed.

Renovations to the press box and home-side seating have been completed in recent years.

The synthetic turf project is expected to be completed by Aug. 15 in time for the start of the 2007 prep football season.

Findlay would be the third Greater Buckeye Conference school to install synthetic turf. Fremont Ross and Lima Senior have installed similar surfaces on their fields in past year or two. Tiffin's Frost-Kalnow Stadium also features a synthetic turf.

OK, I’ll admit there wasn’t much new information in there except for the bid opening and when the school board is expected to act to accept a bid.
When the bids were open and everyone was leaving I asked for a copy of the plans. The contact person for Rooney, Clinger & Murray architects was there and showed me the plans.
I asked if I could have a copy of the plans, he studied at me with a quizzical look. And asked what do you want them for? I told him I just wanted them.
He hesitated for just a moment and Findlay City Schools treasurer Michael Barnhart piped up that he had to give it to me…because it’s public record.
Thank goodness, I would have hated to have to throw a fit that early in the afternoon if they didn‘t hand over the plans. I have no idea how to read the plan anyway.
I do know for all those interested, yes, they are keeping the outdated six lane track at Donnell.

BAUGHN QUITS AT GALION: Van Buren graduate Kyle Baughn has resigned his position as Galion’s head football coach. Baughn guided the struggling program to a pair of 1-9 records over the past two seasons.
He was non-renewed as the middle school’s assistant principal. Here’s a story in today’s Galion Inquirer.
BOBCAT IS AN OILER: Bettsville's Jessica Lynch has committed to play golf for the University of Findlay next fall. The girls golf district qualifier will study pharmacy at the school.

Thursday’s Prep Softball
Clear Fork 10, West Holmes 6
Genoa 7, Otsego 0

Thursday’s Prep Baseball
Delta 11, Wauseon 0
Melbourne, Fla. CC 12, Toledo CC 0
Toledo St. John’s 6, Chardon NDCL 0
Pendleton, Fla. 10, Toledo St. John’s 4


  • At 7:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The track stays? Here was the chance to make the stadium a better place to watch football, and they are blowing it. Also, it says they are putting in synthetic turf, will it be field turf as in Lima and Fremont or a cheaper form of synthetic turf?

  • At 12:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Why request a set of plans if you don't even know how to read them? Someone has to pay for those plans which can be costly to print. Viewing them is one thing but do you really need your own personal set?? SAVE A TREE and request a .pdf next time.


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