Demons may have a new gym for next school year |

Demons may have a new gym for next school year

Joelle Milholm
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. ” Despite delays in construction, the new gym at Glenwood Springs High School still may have a chance at hosting games in the upcoming school year.

Roaring Fork School District Re-1 and RTA Architects are hoping that by the time Western Slope League play rolls around in January 2008, the Glenwood Springs boys and girls basketball teams will be playing in their new gym.

The new gym, which will be bigger than the current Spencer-Chavez Gymnasium, was originally scheduled to be ready before basketball season, but delays have the current date set as March 2008. Gayla Rowe, the assistant principal at GSHS, is optimistic it will be available earlier.

“They are going as fast as possible, and the builders are wonderful and are in constant communication with us about what’s going on,” she said. “They are working as fast as they can. I was just over there (Wednesday) and the builders are going to town. So we are hoping for January.”

The school also knows that things happen and the hoped-for January date may not be met.

“We planned for the worst. Anyone who has done reconstruction knows how that goes,” Rowe said. “We are rolling with the punches, and that’s how we’ll continue to do it.”

The new gym will seat 1,200 people, 300 more than Spencer-Chavez. The extra room will make a big difference, not only to spectators, but to the basketball teams as well.

If the Glenwood Springs girls and/or boys basketball team makes it to the Sweet 16 or Great 8 of the state tournament, they will now be allowed to host the game if they are the higher seed.

Spencer-Chavez Gymnasium fell 300 short of the Colorado High School Activities Association requirement of 1,200 people for Sweet 16 and Great 8 games.

The wood floor of the new gym will also be substantially bigger, measuring 90 feet long. High school courts are required to be at least 84 feet long, which is the length of Spencer-Chavez. There will also be eight-foot sections of floor beyond each baseline to the wall, giving much more room for fans walking to seats and for the Glenwood cheerleaders.

The players’ benches and scorers tables will also be on the floor of the new gym as opposed to in the first rows of the bleachers at Spencer-Chavez.

“It will be bigger and much nicer,” Rowe said. “A state-of-the art gym.”

As for Spencer-Chavez Gymnasium, it will become the auxiliary gym, and the west side of the bleachers will be torn out.

Construction has already begun on the Demons’ current auxiliary gym, transforming it into Glenwood’s theater. It will not be in use for any sports teams in the fall or winter. It is still undecided if the new gym will take the Spencer-Chavez name or if that will become the name of the auxiliary gym.

The Demon volleyball team, which will open its season by hosting the Demon Invitational Aug. 31 through Sept. 1, will have to split the tournament games between GSHS and Glenwood Middle School. The tournament used to be played in Spencer-Chavez and the auxiliary gym.

Not having another gym will create a schedule shift for basketball teams when their seasons start as the girls junior varsity team will have to begin practices at 3 p.m., a little before school gets out. Since the auxiliary gym was just added to GSHS in 1995, this is nothing new for the Demons.

When the new gym is ready, there will also be a new Demon logo featured at midcourt.

“The student body made a choice and picked a new Demon that will be painted on the court,” Rowe said. “There hasn’t been a steady Demon, with each sport team picking their own design to use. So this will be a new one that everyone uses.”

The new Demon will be unveiled when the new gym opens.

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