Tuesday city councilors approved buying a new LED scoreboard that costs a little more than $820,000.
The new Daktronics scoreboard for the MPEC is costing the city $80,000 more than expected.
“The wench system to hoist the scoreboard up and down, the one we have right now is only one third of the capacity that we need for the new board, so that was the added cost that really pushed it over our budget,” says MPEC Executive Director Bob Sullivan.
But MPEC officials believe the extra cost is worth it.
“It will enhance our current hockey program and one of the complaints we have from fans is that it's hard to follow. Hockey's a very fast sport. It will be easier watching it on the screens,” says Sullivan.
And hockey is not the only sport that could be enhanced.
“We've received interest from an indoor football team to come in and establish a team here,” says Sullivan.
Sullivan says he's hoping the new board will help Wichita Falls win the bid for some big events like the Lone Star Conferences Basketball Championship Tournament the city lost out on last year.
One of the reasons why we did not get it last time was because we did not have a video board.
But some residents speaking out on social media have some strong opinions about the decision.
Like Ryan who says "You kidding me. How about they use that money and resources and get water in this town. Talk about priorities”.
And Amanda who says "In all fairness the money would probably be better used elsewhere".
But Tracy says "I don't live in WF but do attend quite a few events but I would love to see a better sound system installed!! If we could understand the announcer I know we would attend more functions, just my opinion."
A new sound system is not in the works, but the MPEC's next project is installing artificial turf, hoping to attract lacrosse and soccer teams.
The extra cost for the scoreboard will be covered with money left over from the Memorial Auditorium roofing project.
Sullivan hopes the scoreboard will be up and running in time for the Texas Ranch Round- Up in August.
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