The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Foundation will unveil the completed Oshkosh Sports Complex following its Report to the Community Breakfast Sept. 16. Tours of the facility will be available from 9:15-10 a.m., followed by the ribbon-cutting ceremony from 10-10:30 a.m. Additional tours will be available following the ceremony.
The $9.8 million renovation of the complex was completed in two stages. The $4.3 million second phase included a new plaza entrance; updated and expanded locker rooms for approximately 300 student athletes, coaching offices and classrooms; and improved restroom facilities, softball field and parking. The first phase included $5.5 million in enhancements, including the state-of-the-art J. J. Keller Field, a new football/soccer field featuring synthetic turf, softball and baseball fields and an Olympic-quality outdoor track.
The Oshkosh Sports Complex is a unique collaboration between the Oshkosh Area School District, the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, the Unified Catholic Schools and the UW Oshkosh Foundation. Based on economic impact models and other projections, it is anticipated that the complex will generate at least $25 million annually for the local economy.
“Over the years, taxpayers are saving millions of dollars,” said Chancellor Richard H. Wells. “Because we were able to raise funds for one world-class community facility rather than separate facilities for each of the four educational partner institutions, we have been able to avoid unnecessary duplication of expensive facilities and the maintenance costs associated with these kinds of sports complexes.”
Already the complex has brought national attention to Oshkosh. In 2007 and 2008, the NCAA held its national Division III men’s and women’s track meets at the facility. Additionally, Badger State Games and the state’s All Star football games take place at the Oshkosh Sports Complex. Also, the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) holds conference meets at the complex, and the Fox Valley Association brings student athletes from Appleton, Fond du Lac, Kaukauna, Kimberly, Menasha, Neenah and Oshkosh to the facility for its conference event. Additionally, Oshkosh Lourdes High School hosts its trailways conference competition at the complex.
“The Oshkosh Sports Complex is already a valuable asset to the community,” said Darryl Sims, assistant athletics director. “Thanks to generous gifts, including a $1.5 million from the Oshkosh Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, a $1 million donation from J. J. Keller & Associates and a $500,000 donation from the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation, the complex is one of the nation’s finest for multi-sport use, impacting the quality of the educational experience not just for UW Oshkosh students, but for the community.
“We also would like to extend a special thanks to UW Oshkosh Credit Union for their gift in support of the dedication ceremony as well as their support of Titan athletics over the years,” said Sims.
For more information about the Oshkosh Sports Complex, visit www.titans.uwosh.edu/OshkoshSportsComplex.