A group of Hiawatha alumni approached the School Board Monday night to ask permission to raise funds to either renovate or replace the state champion signs around Red Hawk Drive.
Pam Smith spoke for the group that included Dave Grimm and Terry Jimeson at Monday’s regular board meeting. She said that they had noticed the signs had faded and gotten into a state of disrepair after 40-plus years.
In addition, Smith said, they would like to relocate the signs to a more visible location — with a first choice on First Street near the electric marquee sign. She said if the signs were relocated there, they would be set back from the electric marquee and face west. She also proposed relocating the state cross country sign — which is located toward the exit of Red Hawk Drive — also to this area.
A secondary choice for a location would be to place the football and basketball signs near the cross country sign. Smith said the current location is not visible enough, as trees have been planted around the curve and obscure the view.
Smith said the estimated cost would be around $4,000 for the project and this also allowed money for future maintenance. Board Clerk Sarah Windmeyer said there was around $1,000 in reserves for this project — money that had been previously donated. Smith also asked if donations could come to the district so they could be tax deductible.
Board members were in favor of this project, and board member John Wright said he envisioned that a new sign could have places for multiple years to mark state champions.
Smith said they hoped to raise the money and have the football sign ready by this coming fall — which would mark 40 years since Hiawatha won the state championship in football. They were working with a local graphic design artist.
She estimated the basketball sign would also be ready by graduation weekend.
Board members voted to allow the group to move forward on this project and to allow donations to be sent to the USD 415 School District, allowing for a tax deduction.