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Orange County Register (California)
Devoid of cheering fans for several years, the bleachers at Anaheim High School have been removed.
On Tuesday morning, a crane poked, prodded and scooped up the remains of the school's Clayes Stadium bleachers, now nothing more than a tangled mess of steel and rubble. Bytoday, the site should be cleared, a construction worker said.
Alumni reminisced online about attending games in the stadium and a couple posted their photos and videos showing its destruction.
Anaheim Union High School District board of trustees President Al Jabbar said the demolition was necessary to both address safety issues and for the construction of a new $8 million aquatics center. With the majority of football events now being held at Glover Stadium, the decision made sense, he said.
"We do acknowledge the memories, but at the same time, we've not been using it. This is an opportunity to look to the future and create an aquatics center that will be equally memorable for many of our current students," Jabbar said. "It's not only something we're creating for our school, but it's also something the board directed us to look to use for our community. This is going to create some new memories."
Clayes Stadium owed its name to Principal Joseph Clayes, who started at the school as a teacher in 1914 and as principal in 1919. Clayes, principal for 22 years, saw the school reconstructed following the destruction of 1933's Long Beach earthquake.
The stadium was closed in recent years on account of structural damage. Similarly, the school's pool has been left empty for more than a decade.
Once the rubble is cleared away, a groundbreaking for theaquatics center is expected to be held in March, with construction finishing about a year later. The district has ordered the construction company in charge of demolition to collect at least 200 pieces of memorabilia from the stadium, which could go to alumni or be used for fundraising, Jabbar said.
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