Cost of replacement bleachers now at $0

By Jonathan Delozier -

Forget the $8,000 price tag.

Sitetech Inc., the Grafton company tearing down the old North Olmsted Eagles stadium, has agreed to donate those cast-off bleachers to Wellington at no cost.

“When we first spoke to North Olmsted about this, the estimated cost for their equipment was between $5,000 and $8,000,” said district superintendent Dennis Mock at a July 19 board meeting. “Whether donating the equipment to us is a tax write-off for Sitetech I don’t know but we’re happy that they’re doing this for us.”

Sitetech president Frank Jaram said his company is happy to help any school district and the equipment is worth more intact to a school than it would be as scrap material.

“We’ve done demolition work for Wellington when we tore down the old McCormick,” he said. “At the same time, we were tearing down a North Olmsted school. Wellington was also told in that instance that they were welcome to supplies from the North Olmsted site with no charge. We’d scrap it and get next to nothing for it anyway. For a demolition company it’s not worth taking it all in.”

Some insurance details still need to be worked out before the actual installation begins, said Mock.

The Farnham Equipment Company will oversee installation of the bleachers but volunteers are currently being recruited in Wellington to pitch in, with 10 stepping forward so far.

“No students can assist us with bleacher removal,” Mock said. “All volunteers must be over 18, wear (safety) glasses, and sign a waiver. If there are bleachers brought down to the ground, students can help load them into the trailer but they cannot help to install the bleachers. Sitetech won’t allow it.”

Mock said repairs to the locker room roof and stadium track are also still pending.

The old roof is “95 percent” removed but the new one won’t be put on until after the bleachers are done. The district is searching for a contractor to install two new inches of asphalt on the track to prepare it for a new running surface.

All this means there could be a few home football games that are “standing room only” in the fall. The Dukes’ first four games are on the road but it’s hard to say exactly when the seating will be completely replaced, Mock said.

Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.

By Jonathan Delozier