While longtime voice of the Wildcats Dave Robenstine has no designs of hanging up his hallowed microphone anytime real soon, it seems not all things continue to stay the same around venerable, old Woodmore Stadium in recent vintage.
That's because as of the first Wildcat home football game way back on August 31, Robenstine, spotter Bob Eickel, stats-man Kent Weiss, and the rest of the WHS Friday night game crew, were finally gifted with a welcome, new press box to ply their seasonal trades in, which is an improvement Woodmore Athletic Boosters president Corey Cowell suggests was a long time coming.
"The old press box has been around for approximately 50 years, and one word to describe it would be inadequate," offers Cowell, who says the only creature comfort the now-defunct structure ever offered was its ability to keep one out of the wind.
"I don't think to my knowledge there were ever complaints about it, as much as there were internal questions on when it would be replaced," continues the WAB prez, "but film crews would have to stand out in the elements, the windows would fog because they wouldn't open, and coaching staffs of four to five coaches would have to stand in a room designed for two. The old press box was approximately 20 by five feet and it was built around the actual bleachers. So you had to step down to get inside."
"Discussion of replacing the old press box was happening for a few years," adds Cowell, "and it was really ramped up after the new visiting stands were installed."
Funded solely via donations from area businesses and local families, Robenstine and crew's new Friday night home for the first half of the 21st century by contrast measures in at a much-more accommodating 40 by six feet and was constructed by Tom Roth's Crowz Foot Construction and select volunteers, following the old facility's razing this past August 17.
As of last week, the new facility is not equipped with either heat or air conditioning, though it does offer for a much more comfortable game time experience for WHS personnel, coaches, film crews, and visiting media outlets, accommodating approximately 16 to 20 people.
In addition, with the construction of the new steel stands on the stadium's visiting side, which replaced the longtime wooden bleachers in the summer of '11, and accommodate upwards of 780 visiting football fans, logistics for personnel covering games for media outlets, as well as opposing coaches and film crews were further improved, with an additional modular press box.
The press box facilities were just the most recent in a long line of improvements being made to Woodmore Stadium, which over the last four years has seen the installation of a beautiful all-weather track, a sparkling, new entrance gate for greeting fans, and a new and improved concession stand. Further, a replacement scoreboard has also been purchased by the school, and will tentatively be installed as early as next spring.
"Good things are happening all around Wildcat Stadium," says Cowell.