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Lakeridge stadium 'is the right thing to do'

Similar to many families, we moved with our two small children to Lake Oswego 27 years ago for the schools. Not only did our children benefit, but my wife and I quickly came to appreciate living in a community that understood the value of an outstanding education and supported the children of Lake Oswego with donated time and money.Sheinin

We also appreciated the importance our school district put on athletics as one of the foundations of our educational program. To support our schools, I served eight years on the school board and have been coaching the Lakeridge High School lacrosse team for the past 20 years. At this time, there is a proposal in front of the school board to endorse a $2.2 million renovation of the grandstands at Lakeridge, using a combination of private donations, proceeds from the construction excise tax and money borrowed against the future sale of school district real estate. I strongly urge the school board to pass this proposal.

For many years, Lakeridge and Lake Oswego High School shared one field for varsity games, the stadium at LOHS. This was an unsatisfactory arrangement for both schools, especially Lakeridge.

Going back to the successful 2002 bond measure, it was proposed that Lakeridge have its own stadium. Over time, Lakeridge replaced its grass field with artificial turf, added lights and basic metal stands that seat 1,200. The proposed improvements would add a canopy over 600 seats, similar to LOHS, add a press box and 600 additional seats.

This proposal is very important to the success and well-being of the many student athletes and athletic programs at Lakeridge. This project will benefit much more than just the football program, it benefits high school and youth soccer, lacrosse, track and all the other sports and events that are held in the stadium.

It will add cover for the spectators who now endure steady rain to watch their classmates and children compete. It will eliminate the flow of mud and tree debris that covers the seats during rainstorms, the stands will be more welcoming to the disabled and it will help attract the new students and families that tour Lakeridge looking for a school for their children.

We played a varsity lacrosse game last Friday at Lakeridge, with an estimated 500 students and parents in the stands. It was a thrill for our players to hear the steady cheers and singing of the fight song from the students. The school spirit and pride filled the stadium. In the fourth quarter, the heavy rains struck and the students and parents left the game soaking wet. It is time to solve this problem by approving the stadium proposal, a project that has been endorsed by the Palisades Nighborhood Association and has been approved by the Lake Oswego Planning Commission.

We have installed artificial turf fields at both high schools to combat our Northwest weather and it is time to take the next step at Lakeridge. It is the right thing to do for the students and families of Lakeridge High School.

Curt Sheinin, Lake Oswego, is a former member of the Lake Oswego School Board and is serving in his 20th year as boys lacrosse coach at Lakeridge High School.




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