Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Lois E. Johnson
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

MLWR Cooperative talks ticket prices and space issues


August 1, 2019

The two school boards in the Moose Lake-Willow River Cooperative Athletic Program discussed athletic fees and ticket prices at their liaison meeting at the Moose Lake school on Monday, July 22.

Moose Lake Superintendent Robert Indihar told the group that the ticket prices charged for the games are low compared to other schools. The ticket prices are $2 and $5, compared to $5 and $7 for games at other schools.

Willow River School Board member Molly Balut suggested raising the ticket prices to $3 and $6.

“We will get too much pushback if we raise the prices too much at once,” she said.

“These prices have been in place for three to five years,” said Willow River Athletic Director Dave Louzek. “We want the gyms full and the football field full. It won’t make much difference in the budget to raise the ticket prices.”

Willow River School Board Member Susan Grill agreed.

“If we increase the cost, we will have fewer people,” she said.

“I hate to see an increase,” added Moose Lake School Board Member Julie Peterson.” I think the senior citizens could pay more. They have more money than students.”

Louzek disagreed.

“The senior citizens appreciate the low prices,” he said.

Willow River School Board Member Bruce Bohaty spoke about families.

“For families with several kids, it gets expensive,” he said. “We could try and make it easier for a family.”

Moose Lake School Board Member Kim Lourey-Bohnsack suggested that there could be a price of buy one, get 50 percent off on a second ticket.

“We could get rid of a defined category for senior citizens,” she said.

“Just because others raise prices doesn’t mean that we have to raise prices,” said Willow River School Board Member Aziz Al-Arfaj.

A 10-punch pass for $40 or 20 punches for $60 was also suggested.

A motion was passed to keep the ticket prices the same and offer the punch cards.

It was decided to keep the athletic fees of $50, $60 or $70 the same.

Indihar spoke about football practice and where the students would use a locker room.

The grass on the new practice field within the track at the Moose Lake school has to grow another year to get well established. Football practices have been held on the outfield of the baseball field at the old school. The players have used the locker room at the old school but cannot use it this year.

“The power has been shut off in the old school,” he said. “The big issue is that there are no locker rooms there. The football team can use the locker rooms at the new school. The kids could put their helmets and shoulder pads in one room and hang their stinky shirts and shoes in a well-ventilated locker room. The kids will have to share lockers. All of the equipment will be in a separate room.”

Indihar also told the group that the Moose Lake School District will buy the sheds for storage on the football field.

“We will have as many as 80 kids that will all want to change at the same time,” said Louzek. “There will be kids in cross country using the locker room too.”

“There are 150 lockers,” added Indihar. “Phy Ed will take a certain number of lockers but not at the same time. The bottom line is that one of us has to do something different. We’ll give it a try for a few weeks and see how it works.”

“I’ll tell the kids this is how it is,” said Louzek. “I’ll tell them to work with it the best way that they can. I told the kids to bring flashlights when we go to the old school to move everything out of the locker room in the dark.”

In another issue, Indihar pointed out that the booster clubs’ student activity accounts for sports, such as track, will have to be under the school’s control after July 1 if the club does not have a 501(c)(3) status and an advisor.

“Under all of the booster clubs, the school has the right to ask for a financial statement and an audit every year,” he added. “If the End Zone Club lost $100,000 it would look bad on the school. The school has the right to request an audit.”

“Those clubs that have the 501(c)(3) (non-profit status) have gone through the process to get a Federal Tax number,” added Kara Burn, the Moose Lake Business Manager. “As a school, we are not supposed to accept funds for the clubs. We don’t know where the money is coming from.”

A motion was passed to request that the two superintendents, Indihar and William Peel of the Willow River School District, talk to the clubs that are not 501(c)(3)s.


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