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Stadium lighting underway at McDaniel funded by Yingling family

March 30, 2010

Work began March 23 to install field lighting in Bair Stadium as one of the features outlined in planned improvements to the College’s largest outdoor athletic arena.

The project calls for sports lighting fixtures that provide three levels of lighting for player safety and the enjoyment of spectators during night practice and games. These fixtures will also employ new energy-efficient “green” lighting technology.

The project is slated for completion by late May thanks to a gift of $100,000 from a family of Green Terror athletes, alumni, and parents, whose love for football spans several decades and generations. The Westminster-based Yingling family includes former Alumni Association President Carroll “Splinter” Yingling ’68, his brother John, their respective wives, Susan Morales Yingling ’70; M’00 and Sharon Hafner Yingling, and parents, Mary Lee Crawford Yingling ’44 and husband Loring who passed away in 2009. They collectively made their gift after learning about College plans for the stadium renovation project.

“I remember talking to Football Coach Tim Keating 10 years ago and asked him what he needed,” said John Yingling, who with his brother Splinter, played on a semi-pro football league, the Carroll County Chargers, during the early ’70s.

“‘Lights,’ Keating said, adding that this would provide more flexibility for the team’s practice schedule. So, we’re ecstatic that we can do this,” said John.

As youngsters, both brothers played backyard sports year-round and for several summers they boarded an overnight train to New England where they attended all-boys camps and learned everything from archery to boxing to hiking the Presidential Range. Athletic competition comes naturally for the brothers and taught them lifelong lessons as successful business and community leaders.

“I learned the disciplines of teamwork,” said Splinter, who competed with Green Terror football, track and lacrosse programs.

Both brothers can always be found perched at the north rim of Bair Stadium to follow each and every first down during football season. Both, too, have grown children who graduated from McDaniel and appreciate the academic experience that prepared them for professional careers.

"We’re lucky to have such dedicated alumni and fans who support our athletic programs, said Jamie Smith, athletics director. “Division III athletic programs are highly competitive and the planned improvements to our stadium will help our student-athletes and coaches, and provide an improved game-day experience for all.”

Ground will be broken on the $8 million stadium project when funds for the total amount are secured. The general operating budget will not be used for this endeavor and the project does not qualify for state funding. When completed, a fully equipped facility will replace the current grandstands built in 1984.  Of course, the stadium will retain its “bowl” shape and tradition of drive-in tailgating.

To learn more about the stadium project, call Lee Primm at 410-857-2224 or e-mail him at lprimm@mcdaniel.edu

 
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