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District 25 May End Football Games At Holt

Cost cutting plans could mean football players for the Pocatello school district may not be hitting the Holt Arena turf.

The teams said it costs about $2,000 to play one game at the arena after all the different fees, and it doesn’t leave them much room for a profit.

District 25 used to cover the costs of using the 12,000 seat Holt Arena and let the teams take the profits, but now they’re putting the burden back on the high schools.

Those schools say the situation with Idaho State University doesn’t leave them with much profit to pay for their sports programs.

“We’re providing the product for ISU and they take 100 percent of the concessions, and sales. They’re getting a dollar off the top of every person that goes through the door,? Century High School Athletic Director Steve Anderson said.

ISU officials say these teams get a lot out of playing at Holt.

“You’re playing in a wonderful facility, great sidelines, weather controlled, you don’t have to worry about a rainy night or inclement weather, and, as I mentioned, they’ll be playing on a brand new state-of-the-art turf,? ISU Director of Communications Mark Levine said.

A lot of high school athletes likely won’t like leaving the arena.

“I can appreciate that the kids would like to continue playing at Holt Arena, but, long term, what’s in the best interest of the Pocatello/Chubbuck school district, I think, is playing afternoon games at our own site,? Anderson said.

So they’ve come up with a plan: building a football facility of their own at Hawthorne Middle School.

But that won’t be cheap. Along with upgrading the existing field, they’ll have to put in new lights, construct a concessions stand area and build bleachers.

All together it will cost nearly half a million dollars.

ISU doesn’t want the high school teams to have to go somewhere else and hopes something can be figured out.

“Hopefully, the district and the university will be able to work out an agreement above and beyond 2011 that addresses the financial concerns that the district has and the cost of staging events at Holt,? Levine said.

Nothing is set in stone yet. The school board has to vote, and either way the district already has an agreement with ISU for the 2011 football season.

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