Sonoma Valley High track Coach Linda Patterson was sporting a shirt Saturday that read “Meet Director” on the back during the Sonoma County League meet at Piner.
Patterson had numerous family members – including her mother and father – helping out with the meet.
Why, she was asked, was she the meet director at a track meet that was taking place at Piner.
She explained that the SCL meet rotates among the member schools each year and that this year was Sonoma’s turn to host.
But Sonoma can’t host the meet, she said, because the track doesn’t have enough lanes and because there are no bleachers for the fans. So she had her choice of hosting the meet either at Elsie Allen or Piner, and she chose Piner.
This year, the track team had its first home meet in three years because previously the track wasn’t in good enough shape to hold a meet. And they couldn’t hold the SCL meet when it was their turn because of the substandard conditions.
This past winter, the boys soccer team had to play all its home games in Petaluma because the school didn’t have an all-weather field for them to use.
The swim teams and water polo teams rent the pool at the Sonoma Aquatic Club, and while it’s a very good pool, it’s hardly regulation size.
It’s a shame that Sonoma Valley High sports facilities either come up woefully short or are non-existent.
Arnold Field is a good baseball field except for the lighting, which is at best, bad. While lighting can improve Arnold Field for baseball, it’s still a terrible football field.
The school board can remedy those shortcomings.
In the Facility Master Plan for the high school, there are plans for a pool to replace the one that was bulldozed a number of years ago, and plans for an all-weather athletic facility (stadium) for soccer, football, track and lacrosse, if that’s in the future.
But last month, when there was a meeting to prioritize projects at the high school, more than a dozen neighbors attended and were very vocal about not wanting a “stadium in their back yard.”
There were only a couple of voices in favor of the stadium.
The neighbors complained that they didn’t want a 2,500-seat stadium on the school grounds because of parking and noise and lights and crowds and ...
According to figures from the school, the average attendance at football games at Arnold Field in the last two years is between 600 and 800 people, although there have been as many as 1,300 for homecoming.
The school board will look at prioritizing projects at its June 6 meeting. Those who want new athletic facilities at the high school should show up the let the board know how they feel. The stadium opponents will be there too. And they’ll let the board know how they feel.