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Curiously timed resurfacing a necessity for MHS track

Staff writer

The timing of the track resurfacing at Marion High School is dubious, given that it’s taking place during the two months of the year when area teams require its use.

USD 408 Superintendent Lee Leiker said the timing was squeezed to accommodate company delays and the expiration of a grant that accounts for almost 20 percent of the cost.

Initially, the district and the company, Track Renovations, agreed that fall would be the best time for the project. Leiker said the company experienced delays with another project it was undertaking, and it cannot work in poor weather conditions. The other project was far more extensive in scope than the Marion track resurfacing, he said.

Leiker said it wasn’t possible to wait until after the season, however, because a grant that provided $30,000 of the $160,000 required for the project was set to expire.

Leiker said the intended completion date of the project would allow Marion to host the Heart of America league track meet May 15. That would mean three Marion meets and one meet hosted by Centre High School would be moved to different locations.

Both Marion High School meets have already happened, with the Marion Relays April 10 and the Marion CKTL April 14. Those meets were in Hillsboro and Herington. Thursday’s Marion Middle School home meet will be in Peabody.

Hillsboro and Herington allowed Marion to use their facilities free of charge, and Peabody charged $250.

“They just got their track resurfaced, so with us putting wear and tear on it, they wanted to charge us a little bit,” Leiker said. “We’re very appreciative of our neighboring schools for allowing us to use their facilities.”

Berean Middle School also had a meet scheduled at Marion. Leiker said meets initially scheduled at Marion facilities by other schools will be moved elsewhere. Relocation is the responsibility of the school hosting the meet.

Marion is still practicing at the stadium, Leiker said. Head coach Grant Thierolf has been a leader in focusing the vision on the end result, which Leiker said is important.

“If we focus on the end result, that our track will be very nice, we’ll have one of the top facilities, people will be very pleased,” Leiker said.

“As long as it gets done,” Thierolf said. “That’s all I really care about.”

Last modified April 23, 2015

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