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LE MARS, Iowa (AP) — An anonymous donor has given a northwestern Iowa school district $2 million to renovate a high school sports complex.

The Le Mars Community School Foundation will use the money to replace the existing grass on the football field with turf, install a new track and replace the bleachers and locker rooms, the Sioux City Journal reported . The money will also upgrade the press box, lighting, visitor’s bleachers and fencing.

Superintendent Steve Webner said the donor wants the district to build the community a “showcase stadium.”

“This is truly a gift that shows the donor’s support for (the) stadium renovation project, our school district, and the entire community of Le Mars,” Webner said.

The current facility was built in 1959. The project is estimated to cost almost $5 million, and the school board will vote on the project’s architectural plans once they’re finalized, Webner said.

He noted that as many as five games a week are played on the field during football season, which leaves the field in rough condition.

“Artificial turf will serve our students well by providing a sound playing field that is used a great deal,” he said. “The main bleachers used to house a locker room underneath, but is decayed far beyond usefulness. The track was asphalted in 1987 and has been resurfaced periodically; however, it is to the point that it will soon need a new base and surface.”

The district hopes to continue fundraising and begin work in May 2018. Construction may affect the 2018-2019 football season. The district will work with other school districts to find alternative locations for sports events, Webner said.


Information from: Sioux City Journal,