Council to consider renaming stadium

By Brie Handgraaf

Staff Writer

6 Comments | Leave a Comment

If approved by the City Council Monday night, the Rocky Mount Municipal Stadium will get a new name and a $1.5 million boost for improvements.

According to the agenda for the 7 p.m. meeting, the N.C. Wesleyan College Board of Trustees is interested in paying the high-dollar price tag for the privilege of renaming the football complex to the Municipal Stadium for the North Carolina Wesleyan College Battling Bishops. The local college has held its home football games at the stadium for the past two years, during which time officials have tossed around the idea about a longer term commitment and improvements to the stadium.

“The funds would be used to make improvements needed to the stadium, which could include such items as a new field house, improvements to the press box, new score board, improvements to the restrooms, new landscaping and improvements to the entrance of the stadium,” City Manager Charles Penny stated in a letter to the mayor and City Council.

The approval would not alter the management of the stadium or relinquish the city’s ownership of the facility.

Other items on the agenda include three public hearings: one about closing a portion of the 1600 block of Gay Street, another about rezoning 2129 Benvenue Road to multi-family residential and a third to add “crematory” to the approved uses in commercial corridors.

Also on the agenda is a request to amend a contract with Four Griffins LLC for the extension of Beaver Pond Road to Northern Boulevard. In 2012, the city approved a $55,000 contract for the road to Sparrow Hawk Lane, but the amendment calls for the contract amount to be bumped up to $91,000 and the work to extend to Northern Boulevard. It would also extend the contract by 90 days.

During the presentation portion of the meeting, the family of Mary Etta Barnes will be recognized for her advocacy for the South Rocky Mount community.



I don't have any problem with Wesleyan paying 1.5 million for stadium improvements. NC Wesleyan is not UNC or ECU in football. It is probably wise to not build a stadium and use the Rocky Mount football stadium near the sport complex. I doubt if Wesleyan makes any money off of football. They have a team for school spirit, public relations, and possibly to attract more students. Some people might argue that NC Wesleyan should not spend any money on football and focus their limited resources on academics, etc.


It's so easy to waste other people money.

BET You Don't Its so easy to waste other People's Money

I don't understand your comment. It is definitely a better financial decision for NC Wesleyan to use the older Rocky Mount Stadium instead of building their own stadium. And Wesleyan is spending 1.5 million to improve the stadium. Not taxpayers or the City of Rocky Mount. It also does not makes sense to build new stadium when facilities already exist. Wesleyan is saving money and using a facility that already exists in Rocky Mount. This is also helpful to Rocky Mount because an existing facility won't be left vacant. The City of Rocky Mount has a tenant who will use the facility and help fund improvements without using taxpayer money. Actually, my personal opinion is that NC Wesleyan should not have a football team. It would be better to focus their limited financial resources on academics, etc. However, if they are going to field a team it is a better financial decision to use the existing Rocky Mount stadium instead of building their own facility. I hope this clears up any confusion.

Don't do it Bishops!

Please, NCWC trustees, don't be so stupid as to obligate to a city owned stadium without complete ownership. If the city truly wished to work with and contribute to the college, they would donate the ownership to you. You have the plans for a nice stadium on your property. If the city proposed to you the ownership of the present stadium, then it might make sense. Otherwise, leave it alone until you can build your own.


2 Million dollar question. Why should the board of Trustees even consider spending 2 million dollars on an "home field stadium" that's not theirs, don't have full control, have to share it with other teams and actives that didn't contribute monetary to the up grades? And this rises another question. Didn't the trustees know that with a foot ball team they would need a home field? If NC Wesleyan BATTLING BISHOPS want to run with the BIG DOGS the Trustees need to step up to the plate and give their team a place to protect and truly be "THE HOME OF THE BATTLING BISHOPS". The NC Wesleyan Trustees need to take a look at Rocky Mount High (a high school) they have their own home field and then take a look at ECU and how they build a city around them selves and made the city of Greenville their home field. To the Wesleyan Trustees, Don't sell the team out and don't sell the college short, don't give the city council the power to dictate your future just look at the mess they've made of the city. You must do better because you can.

Poor Business

The Nash-Rocky Mount Board of Education gave control of that stadium back to the city for nothing ...nada...not one dime or concession. They had use of it forever, for free. It one of the few "bones" the city could offer in the forced merger of the Nash County school system. Either asleep at the wheel or who cares about the value of this asset...we'll just ask Nash County for more when we need it. Poor business.

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