June 10, 2014
(Bakersfield, CA) – After 12 years of hard play, the field at Bakersfield College’s Memorial Stadium is in desperate need of a makeover. With the funding struggles Bakersfield College has experienced in recent years, covering the almost-$150,000 cost to replace the field was not in the plans. Enter the members of the Renegade Helmet Club, who sought financial support and donations to make the field renovation possible.
Memorial Stadium was the first structure completed on Bakersfield College’s Panorama Campus in the mid-1950s. Since then, the stadium has seen numerous championship battles, Potato Bowl games, track and field records, graduations, and more. The field had not been repaired and replaced for over 12 years – resulting in worn out spots and an uneven surface less-than-ideal for Bakersfield College’s two sports teams which rely heavily on a quality competition surface to achieve athletics excellence.
“I’d like to thank Dr. Sonya Christian and Chad Manning, as well as Ed Davis, who is a proud Renegade, for their collective efforts in making this happen,” said Bakersfield College head football coach Jeff Chudy. “Your support means so much to the players and coaching staff. We look forward to a great playing surface for the 2014 season.”
Earlier this year, Renegade Helmet Club supporters rallied together in hopes of replacing the exhausted football field. The Helmet Club worked directly with Bakersfield College administrators, who were thrilled at the plan to replace the field, and together, the groups worked to make the plans a reality. Thanks to the collaborative effort, by June 2, 2014, the field at Memorial Stadium was under renovation.
“The Renegade Helmet Club is thrilled to be a part of this renovation process,” said Renegade Helmet Club president Chad Manning. “This field is steeped in tradition and history and it is a tremendous asset to our entire community.”
“Bakersfield College is excited to partner with several community members to make this renovation possible. Memorial Stadium is a historic landmark for our community, and an integral part of Bakersfield history,” said Dr. Sonya Christian, president of Bakersfield College. “In the community college setting, Memorial Stadium is awe-inspiring and one of a kind. I invite the community to come and see the result of this amazing partnership as our football and track and field teams make use of the renovation in competition.”
The Memorial Stadium field renovation process will be completed by early July, and the playing surface will be ready for the first Bakersfield College Renegades football home game on September 13, 2014.