High school plans for new sport lights

Christina Smith

Starting in the spring, Washington Community High School students and parents might notice brighter lights on two of the school’s fields.

Superintendent Dr. Jim Dunnan said the school board received a gift from a former district employee.

Brian Wisher, a former coach, athletic director and dean of students, approached Dunnan and athletic director Craig Anderson in December about purchasing new lights for the football and baseball fields.

Anderson said Wisher’s son, Kyle Wisher, is a high school football and baseball coach.

Dunnan said the board approved the proposal and accepted the gift at its Jan. 14 meeting.

“We plan to start taking down the existing lights and poles in the spring and might get the baseball field lights up in time for this season,” Dunnan said, adding the old football lights will be moved to the soccer field.

Universal Sports Lighting in Atlanta, Ill., will install the lights, for a total cost of $165,000 for the lights, poles and installation.

On a football field, light is measured by foot-candles, or the amount of light that is generated from a foot away.

Originally, the name, foot-candle, referred to the amount of light a candle produces from a distance of one foot.

Dunnan said the high school’s current lights are 20 foot-candles, which is adequate for a football field.

“With the new lights, we will have 60-foot candles. Having lights three times as bright is a pretty amazing improvement,” Dunnan said.

 Anderson said the lights will serve the Washington community in a positive way for years to come.

“In my experience as an athletic director, it is one of the biggest gifts I’ve ever seen for a school district,” Anderson said.