Local

District 156 set to replace storm-damaged bleachers

McHENRY – The visitor's bleachers at McCracken Field are set to be replaced this summer.

The bleachers were torn and twisted when a microburst hit McHeny during the larger weather event that leveled Washington, Ill., in mid-November, said Kevin Weisenberger, District 156's facilities manager.

"They were destroyed," he said. "Nothing about it was salvageable."

The bleachers, which cost between $250,000 to $300,000, will be replaced with similar bleachers through insurance funds, Weisenberger said. The district is only responsible for the $2,500 deductible.

The district doesn't have much else on its agenda for summer work except for maybe some parking lot repaving, Superintendent Mike Roberts said.

"I think with our facilities, there's nothing urgent that we have to build or reconstruct other than those bleachers," Roberts said. "Certainly, finances play into that, but there's nothing urgent other than the bleachers that needs to be done."

The district is in the process getting variances from the city.

The city's Planning and Zoning Commission issued its recommendation at its meeting Thursday evening, and Deputy City Administrator Doug Martin expects the City Council to take it up at one of its meetings in April.

The district plans to complete the 14- to 21-day project in late spring or summer, Weisenberger said. The work also includes replacing a part of the fencing and track as well as some landscaping.

"We're looking forward to getting it done," he said. "Our visiting team will have a nice place to watch Friday night lights."

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