CAMANCHE— Middle school and junior high school students involved in the Camanche wrestling program currently practice on the Camanche Middle School’s stage, sharing space with a variety of other clubs and events.
Now, a renovation project is being considered to create a middle school wrestling room in the high school.
For no more than $35,000, Camanche Jr. High Wrestling Head Coach Ryan Kinkaid hopes TO create a safer and easier environment for the middle school and junior wrestling programs. During the Camanche Board of Education meeting Monday night, he explained the difficulties of using the stage for wrestling.
“It’s always a battle there to utilize that space,” Kinkaid said.
Currently, the stage is used for general storage, band and choir concerts, fund-raising events, holiday programs, preschool graduation programs, physical education activities and as an indoor batting cage for both the Camanche and Amateur Athletic Union baseball teams. Kinkaid said as these uses overlap, the wrestling program has to rearrange its mats, equipment and schedules. He also pointed out potential safety concerns due to foreign objects on the stage and the poor condition and coverage of the floor and wall mats.
“I, as a coach, want better for those kids,” Kinkaid said. He currently has 19 junior high athletes practicing on the stage.
Kinkaid proposed Monday night that a wrestling room be created out of a mostly unused space near the existing high school wrestling room. This area currently houses an old wrestling locker room, with a coach’s office, restrooms and showers. He told the board the space is rarely used, except for a few basketball games each year.
The proposal includes knocking down the walls to the office and other rooms to form one large space that could be used for both middle school and junior wrestling programs. It would also be available as a multi-purpose room.