Preview: New field turf coming in July

The Walnut Valley Unified School District (WVUSD) will renew the Ken Gunn Stadium football field turf in June 2020, expected to finish mid-July.

Principal Ryan Maine has worked with sports coaches to design the new field since November 2019. To address environmental issues such as heat emission, the turf will include a draining system and softer cushion on impact.

“The technology in turf fields has improved so much,” Maine said. “[Installing the new turf is going to make it] safer and cooler, and you don’t have to worry about people getting injured.”

In addition to field renovations, the district will implement a green infill system — the layer of pellets in the grass — instead of using black infill. Previously, heat-absorbing black pellets caused melted shoe soles during hot weather. The green infill will reflect heat so the ground maintains cooler temperatures.

“We were on the field for three hours and sometimes, you just stay in place. The turf gets progressively hotter and ends up glued to the bottom of people’s shoes,” marching band member freshman Andre Sy said. “20 degrees [Fahrenheit] is significantly cooler; it’s important for the well-being of the student body [using] the field.”

By Emily Cao, News editor
Photo by Mia Nam