Rose by Another Name: Big Corporate Donation Renames TISD Stadium - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

02/17/04 - Tyler

Rose by Another Name: Big Corporate Donation Renames TISD Stadium

It's a new name and a new image.

TISD Superintendent Dr. David Simmons:  "The new name for Rose Stadium would be "Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium."

It's a hefty contribution, nearly $2 million over twelve years, and it will also change the face of high school football in Tyler.

"When we get the stadium renovations complete, I think this will be the finest high school sports facility in the state of Texas," says TMF executive Vice President Ray Thompson.

Construction will begin immediately. New concessions, new restrooms, and a new field house all at no taxpayer cost.

Simmons: "It will allow us to fund 100 percent of the improvements at the stadium without the use of local tax dollars and I think that speaks volumes for our taxpayers and our community."

Rose Stadium has come a long way in a few years. The field was grass, and it turned to mud in the rain.

Lee Football Coach Mike Owens recalls: "It absolutely amazed me that in a town like Tyler, with two 5A schools that we would have to play in a mud hole."

Now the artificial turf is plush. But field house isn't big enough to keep from having meetings in the elements.

John Tyler Assistant Coach K.C. Hayes: "It's 30 degrees outside with the wind chill factor and you're trying to have a defensive meeting outside, [it's tough.]  It's not just us. Our opponent was fighting the same thing on the other side."

For both John Tyler and Robert E. Lee, more comfort and more fans always help. And for TISD, they want others to take notice of what Mother Frances has done.

"I hope this sends a message to other interested corporate and private partners that there are opportunities to partner with our school district," Simmons says.

Because with state and local tax dollars stretched more every year, more of that could stay in the classroom.

Reported by Morgan Palmer.

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