BOONE — Appalachian State University Chancellor Sheri Everts led a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Nov. 13 for the Kidd Brewer Stadium north end zone facility — referred to generally as the End Zone Project — which will accommodate various athletic, academic and community uses.

“This building represents another tremendous milestone as we build infrastructure that supports and elevates Appalachian’s mission,” Everts said. “It is a space where members of the App State Community, and so many others, will host academic conferences, hold meetings, watch athletic events, gather socially and meaningfully engage with our university.”

Features of the mixed-use athletics facility include:

• A total of 88,233 square feet of indoor space — built for LEED certification — plus more than 1,000 balcony seats with unimpeded sightlines of the stadium.

• The Grandview Ballroom, located on the fourth floor, can accommodate up to 1,000 guests and be used for such events as academic conferences, receptions and/or banquets. The ballroom’s floor-to-ceiling windows offer sweeping views of Kidd Brewer Stadium and Howard’s Knob.

• Housing for App Catering and a state-of-the-art catering kitchen; athletic and ticketing offices; and a weight room, locker room, team lounge, hydrotherapy treatment area and team store.

• Notable design features include a glass elevator tower and roll-up garage doors in the weight room to allow fresh air for indoor/outdoor workouts.

Speaking outside the facility’s main entrance, the chancellor addressed a small group of invited guests, as attendance was limited by COVID-19 restrictions. The guests were Philip Byers, representing the University of North Carolina System Board of Governors, and App State Board of Trustees members Scott Lampe, chair; Mark Ricks, vice chair; Tommy Sofield; and Michael Davis, president of App State’s Student Government Association.

Doug Gillin, App State’s director of athletics, said the multiuse facility will benefit various groups within the university and Boone communities.

“The vision was to create a world-class facility, one that would allow the university to continue to recruit students who can compete in the classroom as well as on the field,” Gillin said. “This building helps make Kidd Brewer Stadium one of the best venues of its size in the country.”

App State’s Paul Forte, vice chancellor for business affairs, commended the chancellor for her vision and leadership, along with Gillin and John Eckman, associate vice chancellor for campus services, for their collaboration. He also thanked the many contributors and stakeholders for their cooperation and expertise.

“We know this facility will be an epicenter of activity for our campus community and far beyond,” Forte said, “and we hope to welcome you all back for years to come.”

The total budget for the End Zone Project is $50 million, funded through donations to Appalachian Athletics’ A Mountaineer Impact: A Drive for Excellence fundraising initiative, club seat revenue, Campus Services revenue and debt through Millennial Campus designation, which will be repaid using tenant lease revenue.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Kidd Brewer Stadium welcomed 2,170 fans for Saturday’s football game against Georgia State University. Of the north end zone facility’s new balcony seats, 70 were available for use. Read App State Athletics’ latest football spectator update for more information.

App State is currently taking reservations for the Grandview Ballroom — subject to COVID-19 restrictions — for spring 2021 and beyond. Make a reservation and/or email grandview@appstate.edu for more information about the venue.

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(4) comments

yosefisdying@gmail.com

This is yet another illustration of the horrible leadership at Appalachian. It adds to the many examples of bad leadership and misguided priorities. Get this, during a pandemic and during major budget cuts, the university has spent millions on moving dirt in the stadium to make it louder (as stated by the AD), millions on new basketball practice courts, and more than $55 million on more on an athletics vanity project.

This building replaces facilities that is less than 20 years old, that still meets needs, and is still being paid off by students. There was no need for new locker rooms, office space, meeting space, treatment rooms, etc. It was to make the stadium look better—same argument for removing the track and moving the dirt. Why are they so careless with money? Because it is not their money. The Chancellor and BOT have given Athletics a credit card to run up debt that will be paid by students and taxpayers. Athletics generates $37+million in expenses every year, but only generates $13 million in revenue. That is a $24+ million operating loss! That is among the largest operating losses in the country!! And it has been growing tremendously year after year.

That loss is bailed out every year by student fees, university funds (via non-cash transfers) that is covered in part by taxpayers. It’s a scam that allows Athletics to live far far far beyond it’s means. And it is irresponsible and incompetent that the university is direct these funds to fan (mostly non-student) entertainment instead of academics, instruction, research and faculty. Athletics spending has grown FIVE TIMES faster than academics spending!! Athletics facilities are top-notch. Athletics salarlies are top-notch. Academic facilities and salaries are falling like a rock. The backward priorities are painfully obvious, and this leadership is driving Appalachian into the ground. We use to be like William & Mary, but now we are like UL Monroe. We use to be a highly regarded university. Now we are a degree mill.

The leadership does not get that academics is the purpose and mission of the university. Athletics is NOT. Fans and patrons should pay for their own entertainment, and Athletics should live within its budget. It’s not the students, university or taxpayer responsibility to pay for these fans’ entertainment. The students, university and taxpayer should be paying for academics!! But right now, 15% of tuition and fees goes to bail out athletics annual operating deficit. This chancellor and BOT have ruined Appalachian and Boone. Incompetent leadership with backwards priorities. It's painful to watch.

thechaosaysmuuuu

Another massive waste of money to support a program that's entirely incapable of funding itself. Athletics has a $25 million deficit year after year, subsidized on the backs of students (and taxpayers) to the tune of just over $1000/student/year.

What a complete and utter sham.

Sheri, you and each and every one of your sycophantic toadies are a complete and utter embarrassment to this (once) great university.

yosefisdying@gmail.com

The space is not needed. What academic conference wants to have a view of a football field? And they don't mention they will charge academic units to use the space. There was excess athletics space, unlike the severe shortage in academic space. I'm glad they have a nice glass elevator to go with their gold toilets, but what a stark contrast to the broken, unsafe elevators and nasty bathrooms in academic buildings. And this waste is NOT paid for by athletics. It is paid for by students (mostly living on student loans), university funds (provided by taxpayers). It's a mismanagement of a public institution and public funding. Shame.

yosefisdying@gmail.com

And their claims of how this is paid for is incomplete and misleading. It is not what they told others on campus. We were told the last $50m athletics facilities spending spree would be paid by donations, but students ended up paying for it...and they are still paying for it via athletics debt fees (which has increased 200% in the last handful of years). They also promised that the cost of the move to the Sun Belt would not be put on the students backs. But that is exactly what has happened. Their athletics fees that subsidized the move have increased tremendously since the move to the Sun Belt. This is a pattern. They offer rosey projects that never happen, and then they stick the students with the bill. Students will pay for this as well and these people know it. They'e said it in meetings. Where is the UNC system oversight?

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