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Morris County USD 417

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Prepping the Football Field

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5ba1005fac184Jim Ehrlich on football field spraying the lines and Bunny Ehrlich helping him.Martha House

Martha House

Jim Ehrlich on football field spraying the lines and Bunny Ehrlich helping him.

Of all the preparation and practice devoted to the first home football game of the season, the most fundamental of all is the physical preparation of the football field. The custodial crew puts in hours caring for the grass and measuring and painting the lines, numbers, and hash marks.

Beginning in the spring, the grass on the football field must be regularly aerated, sprayed, fertilized, watered, and mowed . . . and mowed . . . and mowed.

In mid-August, Bunny and Jim Ehrlich begin to measure out the lines. “We have to find the pegs on each side and in the end zones and then we run lines (strings) between the pegs. These are then painted with a painter and then we measure where we are going to set the stencils for the hash marks and the stencils for the numbers. Then Jim paints the actual cross lines and out of bounds lines with a painter. I paint the hash marks and the stencils by hand with spray paint,” Bunny explained.

The initial measurement and painting is the most difficult because the stenciled numbers and marked lines have to be painstakingly measured the first time. “We repaint every week so we don’t lose the lines or numbers. I only have to carry the stencils with me the first time, and we only have to string the lines the first time unless it’s really muddy,” Bunny said. The practice field has to be painted as well, and it takes between three and a half to four hours each week to keep the fields freshly painted.

Even if the Braves don’t use the field because they are playing away, Jim and Bunny must repaint every week so they don’t lose the lines and have to measure everything out from the beginning again. If it’s sufficiently muddy and the field is torn up after the game tonight and youth football tomorrow, Jim and Bunny will have to start all over.

 

 

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Notice of Non-discrimination:   USD #417 does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age in its programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Aron Dody, 17 S Wood Street, Council Grove, Kansas 66846 (620)767-5192