The Lakewood Rangers will now play their home games and host meets at First Federal Lakewood Stadium.
It’s the same place at the corner of Bunts Road and Madison Avenue, but it’s just got a new name, thanks to a new partnership between the Lakewood-based bank and the school district.
First Federal of Lakewood has agreed to buy the naming rights at Lakewood Stadium for the next 10 years, in a contract worth about $320,000.
On Monday night, the Lakewood School Board unanimously approved the deal.
The plan calls for First Federal’s name and logo in both end zones, the front and back sides of the scoreboard, concession stands, press box, the side wall facing Bunts Avenue and at the entrances.
First Federal will pay for the signs and the money paid to the district will be deposited into a capital improvement account dedicated to stadium maintenance and upgrades.
It’s a good deal for the cash-strapped school district, coping with sweeping state cuts and declining property values, officials said Monday.
“First Federal Lakewood is a well-established, longtime civic supporter of many organizations and events in Lakewood and we are thrilled that they have now put their support behind Lakewood City Schools in a major way,” said superintendent Jeff Patterson in a news release.
“We are grateful for their partnership and look for the opportunity to replicate this type of agreement with others in the future.”
“We are trying to find creative ways to supplement public education,” Patterson added. “It is one of the things our residents asked for in our community meetings last year – to find different revenue sources.”
The new agreement takes effect April 1, and the signs should be erected just in time for the start of the track and field season.
“On behalf of the Lakewood Board of Education, I would just thank everyone who worked so hard in developing this agreement,” said board president Betsy Shaughnessy. “It is critical that the school district and the local business community work co-operatively to support our students.”
Gary Fix, president and CEO of First Federal Lakewood, said the bank — founded in Lakewood in 1935 — is pleased to support the school district.
“This partnership with the Lakewood City Schools is an excellent opportunity for us to deepen our commitment to the Lakewood community, support programs and facilities that will positively impact the lives of Lakewood students and athletes for years to come,” said Fix.