Funding the field

HANCOCK – The improvements planned for the athletic field at Hancock Middle and Central High School will eventually be done in phases, and the effort to raise funding for the project is continuing.

When Hancock Public Schools and Finlandia University made an arrangement in 2009 to trade school property in exchange for tuition remission for Hancock Central High School students, they were looking 12 years into the future. The arrangement between the school district and Finlandia included the former middle school and what was then Condon Field, and is now McAfee Field. Varsity and junior varsity football games are still played at McAfee field, but the intention is to eventually have all football games played at the field next to the middle and high school on Campus Drive.

The bond to build the new middle school included the field, track, goal posts and scoreboard, but a field house, bleachers, concession stand/press box, permanent bathroom facilities, and field lighting are still needed, so the Bulldog Athletic Complex Capital Campaign was created to raise funds for those features.

Hancock Public Schools Superintendent Monica Healy said there is $6,500 in the capital fund for the athletic field improvements.

Another fundraising effort involves the sale of school calendars, which provide purchasers the opportunity to take part in many raffle drawings during the school year for cash prizes, which Healy said is popular with many Hancock residents.

“It’s kind of a win-win situation,” Healy said.

Since the year is half over, Healy said 2013 calendars can be purchased for $10, half the full $20 cost. People can reserve the 2014 calendars, now, also. Tear-off tickets on the back of each calendar where the buyers name and phone number are written are used for the drawings. There are four drawings each week, three for $20 and one for $40. There are special drawings during the year, also, including a $250 early bird drawing for those who purchase their 2014 calendars before Nov. 29, 2013. There is a $500 Wing Ding drawing in February. There are $200 drawings for memorial Day, the Fourth of July, the first day of school and Thanksgiving. There will be a $300 Christmas drawing, also.

There are more than $7,000 in prizes, Healy said, and more than 200 chances to win because each winning ticket is returned to the pool of tickets, and could possibly be drawn again.

“Everybody’s eligible for the special drawings even if you’ve won,” she said.

Healy said the school booster club and the Hancock Public Schools Foundation is also involved with the fundraising effort for the athletic field.

“We have lots of entities interested in helping,” she said.

However, Healy said more people are needed for the effort.

“It’s frustrating because we want to do more, but we need more ideas,” she said.

Healy said the arrangement for the exchange of property and services with Finlandia is working out well. Besides the Hancock football players using McAfee Field, the Finlandia athletes use the Hancock schools track for practices.

“Finlandia has been very good to work with,” she said.

The Hancock All-School Reunion takes place July 25 to 28, and Healy said the fundraising for the athletic field improvements will be part of that.

“I’m sure the alumni will be interested in the project, and I’ll be around to answer questions,” she said.

For more information about donating to the athletic complex project, go online to