Letter to the Editor – Nov. 20

Dear Editor,

I am writing this letter in response to an article in last week’s newspaper. Even though the school district was told by the county commissioners in September that they were not interested in a land trade or anything to do with the new proposed school, football field, sports complex, etc.; it seems now the school board wants them to consider part of the rodeo grounds for a football field. They were already told no about that exact thing.

At the September commissioners meeting, when they gave their decision about the land swap, they also said NO about the possibilities of building a football field. A concerned parent at that meeting asked if part of the existing arena area could be used for a small practice field and the commissioners told them if they wanted to it possibly could be worked out, but the new football field would still be used for parking vehicles and trailers on for events held at the arena as there was not enough room for both.

Evidently this was not passed on down to the school board by those in attendance. The public is welcome to go listen to the tape that was recorded at that meeting. The commissioners are tired of dealing with this. They are not the ones that decided to build a new school on the existing football field.

Was it not brought up at any previous discussions when they made that decision that if that was where they were to build a school where would the football field be? Maybe the concerned parents should go complain to the school board as they are the ones that made this decision. Just remember that as on any board it just takes a majority vote not necessarily every board member was in favor of it.

Also the school board member that made the statement at their last meeting that the rodeo arena is not used during county fair is totally wrong! Starting on Sunday before fair is the sheep dog trails, Monday is the all-day youth horse show, Tuesday is the ranch horse competitions, events on through the week and on the following Sunday is the all-day youth rodeo. All these are held in the rodeo arena. Plus the arena is where the youth take their beef animals to exercise daily during fair as they turn them loose and let them run to wear off excess energy from being tied up.

Also the arena is not dilapidated and falling down. Maybe this school board member needs to come look and not always go by what others tell them. During the warmer months weather permitting the arena is also a practice field for a lot of tax payers in the county. From horse show people, ropers, barrel racers, people that like to ride in an enclosed area on young horses it is their practice area for them and their families. The CCHA has a horseman’s playday there also. This is where young kids get to practice and improve their performances, but yet more importantly build their confidence. Have you ever seen the big smile on the face of a youth that just won or placed in an event for the first time? It is priceless, just like the parent that their son just made the winning touchdown.

So why does the school board want to take away a practice area for those involved with horses and livestock to build something for school sports? It is what those people that chose to do so enjoy as individuals and families. Also if some of the suggested lands available are not suitable due to topography, drainage, underground water, soil conditions, etc. for a football field, then why was it going to be good enough for the construction of a new fairground??

There is at least one school board member that has accepted the commissioner’s answer and suggested to go look elsewhere. I attended the May public meeting concerning all of this and also sat at the commissioners meeting in September when they made the ruling on not to do a land trade. It is not them that started this mess and they should not have to keep dealing with it.

The Wyoming symbol is a bucking horse and as you drive into Sundance from the east the first thing tourists see is a fairgrounds and arena to support that concept.

Dixie Garman