Community survey out to name new Katy stadium

- Katy ISD's second stadium is in the news again because the school district is facing another monumental decision. What to name it?

School Board President Rebecca Fox says the district has kicked off the debate with a community survey.

"This facility belongs to them. They get to choose," Fox says as we tour the stadium's construction site, about 13 months from completion.

The survey asks if the district should sell the naming rights to a sponsor, or name the stadium after a community attribute. If you prefer selling the name, the survey will allow you to suggest a selling price.

Remember this. Even high school stadiums are big business.

"I know that a neighboring stadium got $1.5 million for 10 years," Fox tells us.

If you'd prefer to name the stadium after a community attribute, the survey will again ask for a suggestion.

"Some in our community are saying we want a name that reflects our Katy community. An attribute. Something that we love about Katy," Fox says.

The district has 3,500 hundred returned surveys already. It will collect responses through July 19th, and present the findings to the school board on July 25th.

There's plenty of room on the form to provide additional detail.

"People can submit anything they want us to know," Fox tells us. "We look forward to that feedback."

The facility has already been controversial, costing more than $60 million, but Fox reminds everyone, it's not just for football. It's for multiple sporting events, and fine arts too.

As for naming rights, the district has already heard from interested parties.

"It's certainly hard to pass up revenue, because the revenue generated from the sponsorship would go to the general operating fund," Fox says. But she says firmly, she has no personal opinion on the matter. She just wants it to be the community's decision.

It's somewhat surprising that the survey doesn't ask if the stadium should be named after someone. So there may by some passionate Katy football fans who want to call an audible.

You see, right next to stadium number two, is stadium number 1, named for a FORMER Katy football coach. What about stadium two being named for a CURRENT Katy football coach. After all, Tiger coach, Gary Joseph, is already immortalized in the Texas High School Hall of Fame.

"He's fantastic," Fox says. "He's very beloved and very respected. What an honor that would be to name it after someone like that."

Technically, the district's current naming policy requires the namesakes to be former employees, but Fox says the board could change that policy, if that was what the community really wanted.

It's also important to point out that the survey opens the possibility that the stadium could get one name, and the school districts multi-use complex, as a whole, could get another.

Nothing's cast in concrete yet, except the stairs for 12,000 fans.

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