2009-10 Included Many Facility Upgrades

MOUNT PLEASANT - While construction of the CMU Events Center is continuing throughout the summer, several other refurbishments and upgrades are ongoing throughout CMU's practice and competition venues.

The 2009-10 academic year began with the installation of a FieldTurf surface in the Indoor Athletic Complex's turf bay. The state-of-the-art surface replaced the artificial turf that was installed during the IAC's construction in 1998. FieldTurf is the same playing surface installed at Kelly/Shorts Stadium in 2004, aids in injury prevention and has a lifespan nearly triple that of the original IAC surface.

The turf bay services each of CMU's more than 400 student-athletes across 16 varsity sports. The facility also hosts CMU's fall and summer sports camps, intramural and club sports and campus and community recreation events; multiple activities are scheduled in the turf bay nearly every day of the year.

Kelly/Shorts Stadium has undergone a series of upgrades within the past decade. Along with the new FieldTurf surface in 2004, permanent stadium lights were installed in 2006, and new scoreboards and a video replay board were added in 2008. The 2009 season saw maroon paint added to the stadium's interior walls and stairways, large graphics installed on the buildings along the east concourse and the renovation of the Chippewas' locker room.

The CMU Bookstore's satellite facility, the Chippewas Varsity Shop, also debuted in 2009 at the northwest corner of the stadium. The store provides fans an exclusive outlet to purchase Adidas branded CMU apparel on game days at Kelly/Shorts Stadium and during other special events on campus.

Additional upgrades during the fall season included the installation of team bench shelters at the CMU Field Hockey Complex. The shelters protect players and coaches from both teams from the elements and provide an area for equipment to be stored during a match.

Ground was broken during the fall for the CMU Events Center, which will be the crown jewel in the athletics facility landscape. Scheduled to open for the 2010-11 winter sports season, the events center will include arena seating for 5,300, practice facilities for basketball and wrestling and a dynamic 10,000-square-foot entryway.

Click here for more information on the CMU Events Center.

The Events Center will be a multipurpose facility that will benefit the entire mid-Michigan region. Approximately a half-million visitors annually are expected to pass through the Events Center, which will be capable of hosting athletics events, concerts, commencements, expos and other social, cultural and educational events.

The Theunissen Stadium complex saw the construction of additional fencing around the practice field adjacent to the stadium, creating two fully functional playing fields at the complex. Inside Theunissen Stadium, new lettering and paint were added to the first-base and third-base dugouts.

While Events Center construction continues into the 2010-11 academic year, several other projects also are scheduled to be completed during the upcoming year.

Another phase of upgrades will take place at Margo Jonker Stadium later this summer. The infield will be resurfaced with Hilltopper Infield Mix, sod will be added to redefine the outfield lines and padding and paint will be added to both dugouts.

Kelly/Shorts Stadium will receive attention as well. Lettering reading "Central Michigan University" will be added to the top level of the press box façade, while a backlit CMU logo will be installed on the center level of the press box façade.

Other projects planned for summer and fall include the installation of championship displays at the CMU Field Hockey Complex and CMU Soccer Complex and landscaping improvements at Theunissen Stadium.

"We have an enormous amount of pride in the collection of venues we have on our campus," said CMU Director of Athletics Dave Heeke. "Our student-athletes deserve the opportunity to train, practice and compete in the best facilities we can provide for them, and it also is important to us to give the surrounding community an opportunity to utilize our facilities as well."

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