The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

April 27, 2013

Indy seeking help for Covey Field renovations

By J. Daniel Rollins
Register-Herald Sports Writer

BECKLEY — The last time George D. Covey Field at Independence High School had any major changes, Cyndi Lauper just wanted to have fun, Axel Foley was patrolling the streets of Beverly Hills and Hulk Hogan defeated The Iron Shiek for the WWF championship as “Hulkamania” started to run wild.

Obviously, 29 years can bring a lot of wear and tear to a stadium.

That’s why Independence athletic director Rick Vass is hoping to do something about it.

“There are three projects going on right now,” Vass said. “We’re working on the football field, the press box and the scoreboard.”

Vass is reaching out to the community, local businesses and alumni to help support the project.

“We’re trying to appeal to get monetary donations to help the cost,” Vass said. “Any donation is appreciated. Whether it’s $5 or $10 or whatever, it will help.”

Donations can be made to Independence High School by marking the memo line for the football project. The renovations are expected to cost $20,000.

“The field has been neglected,” Vass said. “It’s not because of any of the coaches, but it’s had a lot of use. They use it for youth football and middle school football on top of the high school. It’s used every day with practices, so it’s used a lot.”

Vass says the school has already received some big donations from Affinity Coal Mines and Walker Machinery.

“Walker Machinery donated a dozer and a roller and Affinity Coal Mines donated fill dirt,” he said.

Independence wrestling coach Cliff Warden and Jeff Cochran have volunteered hours of work, moving dirt and getting the field ready for seed.

Vass hopes to also assist Independence Middle School through the project.

“We’ve moved 20 loads of dirt down there,” he said. “They have a field for practice, but it has a lot of rocks and glass. So we’re hoping this will provide them with a new, safer field.”

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On top of donations, Vass said the school is selling signs for the football stadium to area businesses. The signs provide advertising along the fences and will run an initial $375 for a 4x8 sign and $100 for each additional year. To purchase a sign, contact Vass at (304) 683-3228.

— E-mail: jrollins@ and follow on Twitter at @JDanielRollins.