Davis & Elkins College will celebrate a milestone this weekend with the dedication of two completely refurbished athletic facilities. The public is invited to ceremonies planned for the pool at 1 p.m. Friday and the soccer field at 11:30 a.m. Saturday.
Located in the Hermanson Center, the pool area was renovated after a roof collapse left the facility in need of extensive repairs. In less than a year, friends and alumni of Davis & Elkins filled a critical need for students. The Raise the Roof Challenge, launched with a $200,000 challenge from Student Assembly in 2012, was fully funded in August with nearly $914,000 contributed.
The facility upgrades include a new slanted roof and a ventilation system, digital pace clocks for lap swimmers, and renovations to the men's and women's locker rooms. In addition, The Inter-Mountain provided generous support for a new state-of-the-art scoreboard.
The D&E pool is home to the Senator Swim Team and the Elkins High School Swim Team during the academic season. It is also used by Elkins Otters Inc. and the community throughout the year.
Students, as well as the community, also will have greater opportunities for playing outdoor sports with the new Astroturf soccer/lacrosse field at Allen Fields.
Earlier this year, college administrators decided the only solution to fixing drainage problems at the grass field would be to construct a new synthetic surface. Alumni and Trustees Bill Nuttall, class of '70, and Hank Steinbrecher, '71, convened a committee of soccer alumni to raise the $600,000 necessary. Under their leadership, the Finish the Field Campaign Committee met by conference call every Monday evening.
Building upon two large anonymous gifts received in May, committee members J. Adam Baumgardner, '06; Erik D. Christie, '88; Nicole 'Cole' Dant, '11; Craig 'Rudy' Eppright, '73; William D. Glenn, '69; Nils A. Heinke, '73; Douglas "Doug" A. Homer, '93; Gary Horvath, '62; Ray K. LaMora Jr., '74; Kathleen "Kate" M. McArthur, '09; William "Scotty" Smyth, '72; Paul S. Stirrup, '60; Charles A. Straw, '70; and Sean E. Walle, '94 continue to work diligently to raise the balance.
The turf field, emblazoned with the D&E logo in the center, opened for play at the beginning of the current soccer season.
Immediately following the field dedication, the Women's Senator Soccer team will take on Alderson Broaddus University. The men's team will face Alderson Broaddus at 2:30 p.m.
Both dedications will include an official ribbon cutting, and remarks from college officials and athletes.