The Chaparral Firebirds Football Foundation (CFFF) raised over $1 million in private funds to build a team field house and field turf after Chaparral renovated their high school campus in 2007.
The school’s renovation project included tearing down the previous football coaches’ offices without any plans to build another one. Instead, the school planned for coaches to use an in-season office inside a locker room shared by all Chaparral High School sports.
The school’s renovation plan sparked efforts by the CFFF to raise money to build a field house, according to CFFF booster member Mark Carroll. Their main priority changed when the Chaparral softball program built a fence that eliminated the football practice field. CFFF booster founder Mike Norris said the football team was landlocked after the softball team built their permanent fence.
Northern Trust Bank President and CEO David Highmark offered to lend the booster club a line of credit of approximately $900,000 to build a field house and field turf, according to Carroll. Eight families from the booster club personally guaranteed bank notes for the field and field house, including Mike and his wife Debbie Norris.
The CFFF raised the money through various fundraising methods, including team gear sales, booster club membership fees and cookie dough sales, to name a few.
The new Chaparral field house contains a large coaches’ office upstairs, a team meeting room, a senior lounge for the 12th-grade players, and a varsity locker room. Carroll says the field house facility rivals Division I and II college football programs and that the locker room is unbelievable for a high school.
The note for the field house was $280,000 and the CFFF paid approximately $50,000 up front for a total of $330,000. Eight families personally guaranteed both bank notes.
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