When the new scoreboard at Cedar Lane Regional Park powered up for the first time over the weekend, it marked more than a win for athletes who will see their goals up in lights; it signified the beginning of a 10-year partnership between Upper Chesapeake and the Cedar Lane Sports Foundation.
The scoreboard was unveiled Saturday morning and is similar to those recently installed at Towson University, Loyola College and Stevenson University. Featuring an LED video display and sound system, the 9-by-16-foot scoreboard was made by
Daktronics, the "top scoreboard company in the world," according to John McHugh, executive director of the Cedar Lane Sports Foundation.
The scoreboard is the only one of its kind at Cedar Lane Regional Park, which contains 12 grass fields and one turf field where soccer, field hockey, football, rugby and lacrosse teams come from all over the East Coast for tournaments. Now, McHugh said, the scoreboard will allow the park to attract national competitions since it meets additional regulations.
Since Cedar Lane Regional Park is owned by the county and operated by the foundation, McHugh said it was vital to have support from businesses.
. "...without the private sector, it is very difficult to make the improvements we need," McHugh said. Of Upper Chesapeake, he added: "Their support for this scoreboard is unbelievable."
To pay for the top-of-the-line piece of equipment, Upper Chesapeake will pay $25,000 a year for the next 10 years, according to Dean Kaster, senior vice president of corporate strategy and business development for the University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health.
In addition to donating the scoreboard, Upper Chesapeake is providing services for the athletes.
Teams are required to have athletic trainers on the field during games, and under the new 10-year agreement with Upper Chesapeake, Cedar Lane Regional Park will exclusively use trainers from the health system.
"As the premier health care provider in this region, we felt it was critical," Kaster said, "to bring the strength of the health system" to the community. "We are going to be providing medical [staff] ... in terms of whatever needs they have."