Bleachers Condemned

September 5, 2017

After Vassar High School in Michigan had its bleachers condemned, it was forced to provide alternate solutions for seating people at games. According to mlive.com, at Vassar's final football game last year, one of the bleachers' bottom steps cracked, and while it was repaired at the game, Jamie Strauss, the school's athletic director, said the bleachers were unlikely to get through another game.

Jason Kiss, Vassar's principal and football coach, estimated that the bleachers were around 40 years old.

"They've had their life expectancy," Kiss said. "There are some structural issues. They're just not up to code anymore.”

In May and August, Vassar residents voted against measures to provide money to replace the bleachers. It is estimated that replacing them would cost $400,000.

Bavarian Bleachers, which is based in Frankenmuth, donated 250-seat portable bleachers for Vassar's three home games, while the school is looking into using the elementary school gym for indoor sporting events..

"The nice part is that with our community, they support us,” Kiss said. “A lot of people came out because it was something different. When you looked around, there were a lot of people there supporting the kids. We had a really good crowd, considering this wasn't a league game and it was before school started."

The athletic department will not charge fans for admission, but while it still sells concessions, it will not receive as much revenue from sporting events this year.

"We'll still have concessions ... the athletic department funds itself," Strauss said. "We haven't sat down to figure out where we will be or how much this will put us in the hole. Hopefully, we can do other things like fundraisers to offset some of the losses. We do have a strong athletic association."

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