Renovations scheduled for Mansion Park

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Ben Blackie

Serve! Junior Becca Dull goes to pass the ball. Girls’ soccer is only one of the many sports that use Mansion Park.

Ben Blackie, Editor in Chief

In the April 19, 2021 the school board approved renovations to Mansion Park Stadium with a vote of 6 to 3. Renovations will include a new turf field, resurfacing of the track and replacing the current scoreboard. Mansion Park has a seating capacity of  10,400 and holds multiple events throughout the seasons.

The turf field and track hasn’t been updated since 2009 and will be payed by the school district.

“In the summer of 2009, Sports Construction Group, LLC installed “Trophy Turf,” which has a 48-ounce face weight and inlaid football and soccer lines,” according to the AASD official website.

“Both the track and field are in poor shape and have outlived their lives. The turf fiber have been worn down to the point that the pebbles are higher than the turf in some spots,” Riccio said.

In addition to the track and field being redone, a new score board will be installed.

“We will be replacing the current score board with a new 18×34 foot jumbo screen. The whole thing can be divided in to four sections or used for one large video,” Riccio said.

The renovations are predicated to last 10 to 12 years.

“The renovations at Mansion Park will only help improve what I feel is the best stadium in the state and possibly the country. Our players are very fortunate to have what we have here at Altoona Area High School and these renovations will make things even better. I can’t wait to see the finished product””

— head football coach Vince Nedimyer

“The anticipated start date is June 14 and the anticipated end date is Aug. 12,” Riccio said.

Although the construction dates will be during summer training, practices won’t be affected.

“Football will be able to practice on the grass practice field, we also have the junior high field and new I.M. field,” Riccio said.

Mansion Park, on average, holds more than one hundred events throughout the year.

“You have to remember we hold our school’s football games, soccer and track games. Each of those teams also hold weekly practices there during their season. We also host PIAA playoffs in soccer and football and at one point, lacrosse. Mansion Park also holds community events for Relay for Life, Brian Morden Foundation and Suicide Prevention,” Riccio said.

Over the years, Mansion Park has also been a venue for large music events.

“Appearances by the Beach Boys, Up With People, the United States Marine Drum and Bugle Corps, the Penn State Blue Band, the Ohio State Pride of the Buckeyes Band, the University of Notre Dame Band of the Fighting Irish, the University of Illinois Marching Illini and the Indiana University of Pennsylvania Marching Band have attracted huge crowds. Drum Corps International competitions were held in 1998 and again in 2000,” according to the AASD official website.

Renovations will also play an economic roll for the community.

“It will help our community as well. By bringing in people from out of town for our events, people will buy from our businesses, restaurants and stay at our hotels,” Riccio said.