The facility is expected to be completed in time for football season.
By DENISE DICK
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
NILES -- Members of the high school sports teams will soon have more space to work out.
The Frontliners, the club that raises money for the Niles McKinley High School football team, launched the plan last year to expand the locker room, weight room and shower facilities at the stadium. The group has raised $65,000 in cash and materials toward its $100,000 goal and broke ground Monday morning.
"We'd like to thank the citizens of Niles and everyone who has donated to our cause," said Mike Dunn, Frontliners president.
The shell of the structure is expected to be completed in about six weeks, and the facility will be done in time for football season.
The building will house locker and shower facilities as well as the coaches' office and weight room. Because of limited space, weight equipment in the locker facility now must be pushed out of the way when the locker room is in use.
"With the new facility, they'll be able to use the conditioning area year-round," Dunn said.
The facility is being added to the stadium, some of which was constructed more than 80 years ago.
Although the Frontliners are leading the project, the facility will be available to members of other Niles sports teams.
To donate: Contributions may be made to the Red Dragon Building Fund, 1447 Pepperwood Drive, Niles 44446. Donations have come from as far away as New Orleans, where a Niles alumni works for the NFL's New Orleans Saints.
The man had learned of the project and wanted to contribute, Dunn said.
"We want to appeal to the parents of kids in grade school now because their kids are the ones who are going to reap the benefits of this," he said.
Dunn said the group wanted to offer its players an expanded facility.
"There's a tradition of Niles football," he said. "Our field can measure up to any in the state. We wanted to update and renovate our training facilitiy to bring it up to par with the Canton McKinleys and the Massillons and any others in the state."