CEDAR RAPIDS — Kingston Stadium is buzzing with activity this spring. None of it is track-related.
Due to remodeling, reconstruction and the installation of Field Turf at the old stadium on the southwest side of town, the three Cedar Rapids Community high schools have opted to host their track and field invitationals elsewhere.
“The biggest reason is a safety concern,” said Paul James, athletics director at Cedar Rapids Washington. “You can’t run in Lane 1, because there’s a one- to two-foot dropoff to the inside of the track.”
The John Ask Relays, originally scheduled for Saturday and hosted by Cedar Rapids Jefferson, now will be contested in a two-day format. The field events will be held at Kingston at 4 p.m. Friday; the running events will be at 3 p.m. Saturday at Cedar Rapids Xavier.
Xavier is hosting its own meet Friday.
The J-Hawk Relays girls’ meet April 11 has been moved to Armstrong Field on the Linn-Mar campus. It will start at 11 a.m.
Cedar Rapids Kennedy AD Aaron Stecker said a home has not been found for the Draxton-Stiers/Wilkinson Relays on April 17.
“We’re still in limbo,” Stecker said.
James is trying to move the Warrior Relays (April 25) and the Wilkinson Relays (May 1) to Thomas Park Field in Marion.
In addition to Field Turf installation, Kingston projects include lighting improvements and remodeling of two existing restrooms. James said the price tag is estimated at $2.7 million.
“To get the stadium done and improved, it’s a wonderful thing,” said Jefferson boys’ track coach Ron Tower. “It’s unfortunate that it’s being done during this season, but we’ll work through it. We’ve learned to be flexible.”
The target date of completion is Aug. 2. The Kingston football season begins Thursday, Aug. 27.