For one final time, former cheerleaders, coaches, players, supporters and fans of the Plant City High School Raiders, Tomlin Middle Tigers and Dolphins and Colts youth programs gathered in the concrete bleachers of the William Schneider Memorial Stadium Monday, March 20.
For over two decades, the stadium had been the home of football games and Easter services, scholarship pageants and rodeos. Now an integral part of the Florida Strawberry Festival's Wish Farms Soundstage, the bleachers are being torn down and replaced with new, aluminum seating to create seating more fitting for a concert venue.
The final photo was taken at 4:30 p.m. Monday, March 20. A groundbreaking ceremony for the stadium enhancements was held the same day with the Florida Strawberry Festival's Board of Directors.
The enhancements come just after the end of the 2017 Florida Strawberry Festival, which saw a sold-out Willie Nelson concert fill the beloved bleachers and well over 500,000 attendees over 11 days.
"We really strive to make people feel welcome," Florida Strawberry Festival General Manager Paul Davis said. "I've never seen a community embrace a function like this town does. They say it takes an army. For us, it just takes a city. They take pride in this. They are unparalleled in the way they come together."
Contact Emily Topper at firstname.lastname@example.org.