Hoops For Hope was founded in 1993 with the goal of providing work opportunities, job training, and summer programs for youths at risk. Since then, Hoops for Hope has served over 20,000 young people, as well as adults in need. Hoops for Hope has renovated basketball courts, gyms and baseball parks. In summer 2019, for the 27th consecutive year, Hoops for Hope will run its signature elite summer basketball leagues for high school girls and boys teams.
The Andover High School gymnasium and field house floors are failing. Hoops for Hope is raising money to replace the original wood Dunn Gym floor.
Please consider helping us… $250,000 is needed for demolition and installation. We are imploring the town to spend $350,000 to overlay the field house floor.
Last summer alone Hoops for Hope cancelled / suspended play roughly 10 different evenings because the field house floor was too dangerous for our 70 teams to compete on. The girls championship was stopped at halftime and never finished due to condensation.
There is precedent for private initiatives to help Andover athletics:
In 2007 an artificial turf field was installed at Andover High School’s Lovely Stadium after private citizens raised more than $750,000 to fund the project. A second group raised over $300,000 in cash, labor and materials to replace the infrastructure at the field.
In 2016, Andover High School’s Peter Aumais Baseball Field added a press box, replacement dugouts, backstop with 40-foot high netting, and topography after private citizens raised $150,000 in cash and $250,000 in donations of materials and labor.
In both instances, we would have preferred the town fund the upgrades. But we did not want to let a generation of athletes play on mediocre fields.
Now… we are at a crossroads with both the AHS gym floor and field house floor.
The Dunn Gymnasium wood floor was unveiled in 1968 when Andover High opened. Girls and boys championship teams have thrilled full houses there for decades. It has provided 50 years of service but is near paper thin with dead spots all about.
The Richard Collins Field House opened in 1997… it hosts track, Hooptown, baseball, Special Olympics, Church League, Elections and Town Meeting and Hoops for Hope. But the Field House synthetic surface is dangerous and deteriorating more each day.
Long-term renovation or replacement of the high school is on the drawing board. And most options involve retaining the present gym and field house footprints.
Thus, remedial work now will not be superfluous if/when Andover High School is either renovated or replaced. But in the interim both surfaces must be addressed promptly.
Again, $250,000 is needed to tear out and replace the wood gymnasium floor. Another $350,000 is needed to overlay/encapsulate the field house floor. I have a good grasp on these numbers because my business includes sports flooring. But please note the appropriate Town of Andover officials will handle all bidding, selection and installation and I will abstain from any involvement in those processes.
We will seek help from Town Meeting, but that will be challenging, especially with the ongoing fallout from the September 2018 gas explosions.
Hoops for Hope is a primary user of the Field House and vested in its upgrade. A tax-exempt non-profit with 501(c)(3) status for 25 years, Hoops for Hope was the funding/organizing conduit for the Peter Aumais Baseball Field.
Please consider contributing, and thank you
Andover High 1979
Hoops for Hope Founder
Sport Court New England Owner