Fawn Mountain Track and Field
By Miguel Torres
April 05, 2010
I remember arriving in Ketchikan during the summer 0f '06 and
looking forward to the upcoming Kayhi football season. Having
lived in Texas for many years and enjoying quite a few Friday
night football games, I inquired into the Ketchikan football
tradition. I was referred to Blaine Ashcraft, high school football
and commissioner to the Ketchikan football youth league.
I found Blaine to be passionate about the football he was involved
with and asked him to help me put on a pep rally at the Plaza
Mall for the opening game of the season. Little did I know that
football was not as popular in Ketchikan as basketball, baseball
or soccer. I recalled looking for cheerleaders and a pep band
to perform during the pep rally, but was told that the season
began before school started so there were no cheerleaders or
band members available to support the team. I found that odd
but continued on with our pep rally.
Only around 10 - 15 people showed up for the pep rally, but they
enjoyed hot dogs, hamburgers, cotton candy and met our Kayhi
football squad along with the visiting team from Sitka. An avid
football fan did win a pair of tickets to a Seattle Seahawk game
compliments of GCI. Blaine proudly showed up at the Mall with
his team. I admired him that day for that and saw in him a caring
and loving supporter of these kids.
Two weeks later I was introduced to Walker Field. I remember
asking where was the grass and did the kids really play on that
gravel field. Of course, this question was asked while I stood
in a heavy downpour and it was then that I knew that Ketchikan
kids had to be the bravest yet craziest kids I had ever met.
Blaine just smiled at me and chuckled.
Weeks went by and I came to the games to cheer on Kayhi, although
the scores were not in our favor. I had many conversations with
Blaine about Ketchikan and our field. Of course, I naively said,
"Would be nice to have some grass on that field!" This
was followed by "Would be nice to have a bridge over that
As I became Blaine's friend, I was made aware of the challenges
he faced as head coach and commissioner. However, he was always
enthusiastic about the possibility of Ketchikan having a turf
field. When it was announced that Barrow received a new turf
field, Blaine kept saying to me, "Just wait and see, we
are working on a few things"
Today, I watched my son run in his first high school meet at
the Fawn Mountain Track and Field. As I walked on that turf,
I had a flashback to the first time I met Blaine Ashcraft. I
felt proud knowing that he was one of many local residents that
believed in the dream of Ketchikan getting a turf field. I looked
around at all the people on that field today - the cheers of
the fans, the smiles of the participants and I could feel the
joy that our city will now experience when our children join
football, soccer, track and know that we have a first class facility.
"Would be nice to have a roof over our heads" I thought,
but that's for another day.
Thank you, Blaine, Robin and the entire Ashcraft family, for
your support of football in Ketchikan. Thank you for continuously
promoting a turf field to our legislators in your capacity as
Executive Director of our Chamber of Commerce. Finally, thank
you for always saying yes to those in need and for the love you
show for the youth of Ketchikan.
About: "A proud father,
a football fan and Ketchikan resident."
Received April 03, 2010 - Published
April 05, 2010
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