East Ridge alumni unite to give football team new field house

East Ridge Alumni Association displays renderings of the proposed field house. (Image: WTVC)

Football season is just around the corner and the East Ridge High School Pioneers have a new stadium to look forward to.

However, the community says there is still work to be done.

In 2015, the Raymond James stadium was condemned by an engineering report.

The Department of Education paid $300,000 to rebuild the bleachers and press box but President of the East Ridge Alumni Association, Bobby Hudgens, says the demolition "got rid of all the locker rooms, dressing rooms, and restrooms which were underneath the stadium."

On Saturday night, the Alumni Association hosted a fundraiser to raise money to "build a new field house that will, hopefully, be finished by next football season."

Hudgens says the Alumni Association first stepped up when the stadium was condemned.

"That's when our alumni was formed. We started tailgating before games and the team knew we were there in numbers anywhere from 50-100 people," Hudgens said.

Now, the group has more than 300 members, many of whom showed up to Saturday night's fundraiser.

The group estimates it will cost somewhere in the ballpark of $300,000 to build the new field house.

It hopes construction will be complete by the start of next season.

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