Buck Pride Group donates concession stand to PRAS

$5.8 million bond language prepared for May 2016 election

LEROY — A brand new concession stand built by members of a Pine River Area Schools support group has been turned over to the district.

At their Oct. 12 board meeting, board members accepted the donation of the stand located at the Pine River sports complex. Construction on the building began in June due to fundraising by members of the Buck Pride Group, a nonprofit 501(c)3 group which raises money for athletic facilities.

"It feels good to have this project behind us and we're looking toward the next one," said Buck Pride Group member Willy Holmes, adding the group has received many compliments about the concession stand from game attendees.

Board members expressed their gratitude for the group's perseverance and completion of the project.

The board also approved a motion to proceed with ballot proposition language for the May 2016 election for a $5.8 million bond proposal. The bond will address issues including compromised roofs at all three school buildings, secure entries at the main offices of all school buildings, safety concerns at the middle school office roof line and in the parking lots of all school buildings, the drilling of a new well and back-up well at the middle/high school, the replacement of existing boilers and upgrades to heating, the replacement of doors and windows and unsafe bleachers inside the high school gym and the middle/high school track and football field.

The bond also will address the district's goal to replace the high school gym floor which is heaving and cracking, transform the band room into a wrestling room and turn the existing cafeteria stage into a band room, replace pavement and sidewalks at each school, expand the upper elementary playground and reinforce the sanitary-leeching basin dike behind the middle/high school.

"The board agreed we need to vastly improve security and safety at all three office entranceways and address parking and student drop off and pick-up procedures," PRAS Superintendent Matthew Lukshaitis said. "Our goal is to be dry, safe and secure for our kids. We are proud of our buildings and grounds, but we must be proactive and take care of the property as good stewards should."

In his superintendent report, Lukshaitis said official student count day numbers reveal they have approximately 1,054 students. The board budgeted for 1,060 students, but after blended count numbers come in, he said he believes the district will be close to what was predicted.

In other business, board members approved the creation of a support staff position to provide assistance to the transportation and operations supervisor and approved a motion to seek a contract with a surveyor to determine district property at Woodpecker Flats, located on 14 Mile Road. Lukshaitis said the district owns about 240 acres of land but is unsure of where the property lines fall. Once boundaries are established, the land is expected to be used for the sixth- and seventh-grade outdoor education class.