The high school will have a new 'Hillsboro Hops Youth Field' for the upcoming school year.

The Hillsboro Hops minor league baseball team has donated $300,000 to build a new multi-use turf sports field at Glencoe High School.STAFF PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER OERTELL - Hillsboro Hops mascot Barley, announcer Rich Burke, Hops co-owners Laura and Mike McMurray and Hops general manager K.L. Wombach participated in the groundbreaking ceremony for the new youth field at Glencoe High School.

The donation was announced Wednesday, June 6, during a groundbreaking ceremony at the school. The money comes alongside the Hillsboro School District's $408 million construction bond approved by voters last year. That bond called for $2.3 million for a new artificial turf field and other improvements to Glencoe's athletic fields.

The money will be used to build a "Hillsboro Hops Youth Field" at the school — in combination with bond money — which will be used not only for the Hops' youth teams, but also by students at Glencoe, from baseball to softball teams to the school's marching band.

"It will be Glencoe High School's facility to use, for their teams to practice on or utilize in a variety of ways, but on weekends and in summer time when school is not in session, it will be available for youth to use," said Rian Petrick, the district's director of extracurricular programs and a Glencoe alumnus.

For several years, the Hops have been saving to build their own youth turf field, Petrick said. But after the bond passed and school district adminstrators decided Glencoe's sports facilities needed to be upgraded, a partnership between the Hops Foundation and the Hillsboro School District materialized, he said.

"It's going to be a very large piece of turf that will allow for all kinds of different activities on there, and that's really made possible largely in part because of the Hops donation," Petrick said. "And the fact that that youth field area, in their minds, is perfect for what they were looking for (works well)."STAFF PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER OERTELL - Rian and Ben Petrick, along with Hillsboro Mayor Steve Callaway and former mayor Jerry Willey, joined in the groundbreaking ceremony to commemorate the Hillsboro Hops donation to build a new turf field.

Many district staff were in attendance at Tuesday's event, thanking the team for their donation in making the project possible.

"The vision that you had for this project is absolutely amazing," said Hillsboro School District Superintendent Mike Scott to a crowd that included Hops co-owners Mike and Laura McMurray on Wednesday. "This area will be an incredible asset to the community. ... One of the things that we are fully aware of is that kids that are involved in activities have a greater likelihood of being successful in school as well as lifelong success. The fact that you are investing in the community and our students and our kids in this way is going to make an incredible difference with them."

Mike McMurray said it was always their intention to give back to the local community.

"When we moved the team to Hillsboro, our number-one objective was to become, as quickly as possible, viewed as a valued community asset," McMurray said. "That meant more to us than simply providing the city of Hillsboro the premier entertainment option for your summers. We wanted to contribute to our new hometown outside of just Ron Tonkin Field."

The Hops donated the money through the team's Hillsboro Hops Fund, which supports area youth, offering grants and other funding for recreational activities in the area. STAFF PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER OERTELL - Shovels and Hops batting helmets were laid out on the field for the groundbreaking ceremony.

"Today, we celebrate just that with boys and girls soon being able to play on a first-class, all-weather field right here," Mike McMurray said.

During the event, Rian Petrick said the significance of the donation is meaningful to both him and his family. Petrick's father, Vern Petrick, was a celebrated athletic director at Glencoe. His brother Ben is a consultant with the Hops and a former professional baseball player. Glencoe's Ben Petrick Field is named after the player.

"This goes deeper than my job," Rian Petrick said. "My father had great pride in what happened here in the school. ... Putting this field here at Glencoe High School is going to be a tool that allows more kids to participate more of the time."

The new field is expected to be finished this summer in time for the 2018-19 school year.

By Olivia Singer
Reporter, Forest Grove News-Times and Hillsboro Tribune
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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