Arundel High is celebrating its 150th anniversary in a big-time way.
The Arundel Boosters Club is engaging in a fund-raising campaign to make major improvements to its athletic facilities and give the school a marvelous new look.
According to Arundel athletic director Bernie Walter, the Wildcats' boosters have signed for a $250,000 loan to replace 20 major items.
Among the plans are replacing the old bleachers at Steve Carroll Field with seating that will stretch from one 15-yard line to the other, accommodating 2,000 more fans, and modernizing and expanding the ancient press box.
The boosters also want to add a school-wide electronic messaging system that will replace the current, old marquee at the entrance, put in more lighting on Route 175 to the school, and make improvements to the gym and cafeteria.
"It's a big project, but we've got wonderful people in the community and alumni who are very proud of the school," said Walter, referring to the boosters, who got behind the construction of the Wildcats' first class baseball stadium with lights years ago.
"We are fortunate to have so many people who want to get involved."
The boosters with the help of community organizations have already installed new fences at the softball and hockey fields, painted the fences on Carroll Field, and put up new roofs on the ticket booth and track shed.
Koch Homes is donating $80,000 for construction of a new concession stand.
One of the fund-raisers is the Arundel High Walk of Fame, which will be the "Welcome Mat" to Carroll Field. Engraved bricks for the mat and concession wall are being sold for $35 apiece.
Arundel pride will live forever on the engraved bricks with the names and achievements of everyone from teachers to athletes to drama actors, state championship teams and coaches. The school has had more than its share of success stories over the past 150 years.
A written handout for fund-raising projects discusses the Arundel tradition: "The ultimate goal of all Arundel activities has always been the same -- to prepare students to lead and succeed in the challenging world they will enter.
"Today, as always, Arundel Pride is flourishing!"
Makeup games tomorrow
Postponed games from Friday will be played tomorrow, and the games are gaining importance.
Regional playoffs are just three weeks away.
In the Class 4A East region for boys basketball, where eight of the county's 12 public school teams compete, defending champion Glen Burnie is second to Thomas Stone of Charles County.
Unbeaten Stone (14-0) holds the top seed, followed by the No. 8-ranked Gophers, who are 12-2 in games that count toward postseason.
The 50th Annapolis Touchdown Club banquet is Thursday at the Radisson Hotel on Riva Road. The 1954 Navy team coached by Eddie Erdelatz, called "Team Named Desire," will be honored.
George Welsh, who went on to coach at Navy and Virginia, was the quarterback of that '54 team. He will attend.
Special awards to be given out to Navy quarterback Craig Candeto (Navy Silver Helmet), Maryland quarterback Scott McBrien (Maryland Golden Helmet), Arundel's Bobby Schram (Rhodes Trophy, given to the county's top high school player) and Broadneck's Ben Gabbard (Al Laramore best lineman award), who will attend Navy.
The banquet is nearly sold out. For information, call 410-841-5320.
The next win by the 9-7 Annapolis boys basketball team will give coach John Brady sole possession of second place on the state's all-time winning list for public school coaches. The Panthers' 70-45 rout of North County (3-12) Tuesday was Brady's 566th career win, tying him for second with the late Bill Bowers of Allegany. ... Four Anne Arundel County football players are expected to play NCAA Division I next year: Old Mill defensive back Kevin Barnes (Maryland), Glen Burnie defensive lineman Branden Albert (Virginia), Broadneck's Gabbard (Navy) and South River tackle Conor Wicklund (Army).
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