Estill County leaders dedicate multi-million dollar athletics facility ahead of Friday night football game

Estill County Superintendent Jeff Saylor says it's all part of a seven-year, $46 million renovation project for their school system. 

ESTILL COUNTY, Ky (WTVQ)- Estill County education leaders and coaches are getting set to unveil a multi-million dollar athletic facility ahead of their first football game of the season Friday night.

Estill County Superintendent Jeff Saylor says it’s all part of a seven-year, $46 million renovation project for their school system.

The new multi-purpose football stadium alone totaled $4.5 million. Leaders say new facilities have been needed for years and they’re excited for the community to come out and see it.

“It’ll definitely boost our confidence and help us out throughout the season,” said senior football player Braeden Waddle.

Waddle will lace up his cleats for the Engineer’s first football game inside the new multi-purpose field.

“It’s awesome. Coming from last year when our season ended, and them telling us that our field should be done by this season. It’s just exciting to hear,” said Waddle.

The facility is part of a renovation project that includes a field for football, soccer, and track and field. There are also new tennis courts, bleachers, and a press box.

“We believe that every child in Estill County has a destiny to do something great in their lives and the lives of others. Our kids deserve the best facilities that we can provide for them,” said Saylor.

Saylor says it was all made possible through community fundraising, federal grants, and state funding.

Head football coach Jordan Marcum says the old fields and courts were worn. The school hadn’t hosted track or tennis meets in a long time.

“Our field had a lot of different holes in different places in there where it was just really tough. Overtime, water sprinklers began to kind of make some holes in it,” said Marcum.

Athletic leaders say student interest has grown since the new athletic facility was announced. There’s been an interest in the community as well.

“I think the field will definitely bring people here,” said senior soccer player Maci Muncie.

“We had numbers dwindling in some sports. And they’re on an uptick this year. Part of it is moving away from Covid-19. But a big part of it is getting an opportunity to play and be a part of these facilities,” said Athletics Director Austin Moore.

Superintendent Saylor says the full renovation project will be complete by next June. The community is having a formal dedication at 7 p.m. Friday night ahead of Estill County’s rivalry game against Powell county. They’re expecting the biggest crowd ever for the game.

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