INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — Van Horn High School will host its first home football game in years on Friday.
The stadium was completed as part of the district’s $43 million bond issue passed in April with the support of about 85% of voters in the Independence School District.
"Over the last 14 years we've been slowly improving our athletic and our school complex," Chris Corrie, activities director at the district, said.
For more than a decade, the Falcons have played home football games at William Chrisman High School.
"Our home games, weren't actually home games, and fans would have to go and watch at Chrisman stadium and it wouldn't feel like our own," Joseph Kroeger, a senior football player, said.
Van Horn will host Truman High School for the Falcons homecoming game.
"We're going to be so pumped, it's going to be just wildin', we're going to be going crazy all on the field. We're gonna show out," Damon Washington, a senior football player, said.
The last time a homecoming game was held at Van Horn was in 2014, but it was not ideal according to Corrie.
"We had a one-off homecoming game in 2014, we came here, we played, we didn't have anywhere to sit, people just brought their lawn chairs or stood on the track and they watched the game and it was a very special homecoming game for us, but it really wasn't a good set up to manage a game," Corrie said.
Senior students have seen the progress over the years and are excited to play in the new stadium.
"It's crazy, you know. Starting off like my freshman year I remember they were just building the parking lot, so seeing that difference and seeing some gravel and some bleachers turn into a whole stadium set up is just really amazing," Frida Rodriguez, a senior soccer player, said.
Many more upgrades will be made at schools in the district through 2023, including new turf for the stadium.