The El Dorado High School gym has a new center scoreboard, thanks to the Wildcat Athletic Support and Development Fund and the El Dorado Sports Foundation.
Replacing the individual scoreboards located on the East and West sides of the court, the new scoreboard hangs from the center of the gym and scores are displayed on all four sides. Each corner features the wildcat mascot and “El Dorado.”
This centerpiece was the final improvement in a project initiated by Gary Melcher and Brad Long. Melcher was the EHS Athletic Director and Long was the baseball coach when they began calling people on the EHS Alumni Listing to request donations for a Wildcat Athletic Support and Development Fund (WASD) in 2006.
“We started the fund because we wanted to address everything East of the Commons at EHS,” Melcher said.
Between the two of them, they had coached, mentored, or worked with three generations of El Dorado athletes. Using Partners In Education to process and manage the donations, they were able to raise close to $120,000 from 400 donations between 2006 and 2011.
Their most successful donation campaign tool was the gymnasium seat labels. For $100, donors could have their name or a memorial label affixed to the back of one of the seats.
The WASD funds were used to repair, replace, and improve a variety of elements such as the gym floor, the Wall of Fame, locker rooms, multi-purpose room and weight room. After 14 years, Melcher and Long’s goal was finally accomplished. The WASD fund has improved the entire gymnasium, floor to ceiling and wall to wall.