ROCHELLE — Rochelle Township High School will be installing a new scoreboard for the football field at the Douglas A. Creason Athletic Complex. RTHS athletic director Richard Harvey said the school is hoping to have the new scoreboard operational for the spring season. No determination has been made yet as to when the current scoreboard will be taken down.
RTHS currently operates four scoreboards at its football, soccer, baseball and softball facilities. Harvey said the scoreboards, which have been operational since August 2004, have encountered various issues over the last four years. Harvey also said the necessary parts required to maintain the current scoreboards have become obsolete and difficult to acquire.
“It’s very challenging to find parts from used markets,” Harvey said. “In 2019, we started the process of looking at replacing the scoreboard in the stadium due to ongoing issues with it and growing challenges with securing viable repair parts. We continue to experience issues with the scoreboard during events and ongoing issues with finding working parts to make repairs.”
The RTHS Board of Education approved a resolution to replace the football scoreboard in December 2019. Due to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, however, Harvey said the project experienced delays. Harvey also said the scoreboard will be at no cost to the school district, which intends to partner with local sponsors to fund the scoreboard.
“We are thankful for the community support on this project,” Harvey said. “In 2016, the district started an advertising program for our scorer’s table in the RTHS main gymnasium. We learned throughout this process that revenues from advertising could help offset future costs.”
Beyond use at home football games, Harvey said the new scoreboard will benefit other athletic programs and activities at RTHS. Examples include race times displayed during home track and field meets as well as live footage of graduation ceremonies, which have been held at the football stadium in recent years. Additional opportunities for use include Senior Night presentations, award ceremonies as well as cheerleading, dance and band performances.
“Along with benefiting programs inside the football stadium, the scoreboard will also be a source of ongoing revenue to upgrade existing scoreboards for other RTHS athletic programs,” Harvey said. “There will also be opportunities for local businesses to advertise on the new football scoreboard. The revenue from the football scoreboard will go toward purchasing new scoreboards on our campus that are facing the same issues as our current football scoreboard.”