When the newly renamed Hanson Stadium was first built, it was decided to not put a roof over the stadium seating.
This decision was changed later when, during the first year of football, it rained at every home game.
Major contributor and for whom the stadium was named, Rich Hanson was one of the first to come to Athletic Director Ken Schumann with the suggestion to build the roof.
“We were just talking about it, but as time went on, he became more serious about wanting to help us do that,” said Schumann. “So our discussions got a little more detailed.”
Hanson and his wife, Joy, have been major contributors and consistent faces at a majority of Pacific University events. Hanson has also been a member of the Board of Trustees since 2005.
“It was a team effort. President Hallick and Cassie Warman from university advancement were involved in working with them,” said Schumann.
In recent years, Pacific has grown in numbers at a remarkable rate.
With this rapid growth there has been an increase in outside activities such as track and field programs, soccer, football and lacrosse.
As of this year, there have also been junior varsity teams added into the already-existing programs that have resulted in more students to become involved in collegiate sports.
“We’re growing at a fast rate,” said Schumann. “The percentage of student athletes has grown and we have over 40 percent of students at Pacific who participate in athletics.”
With the increase in student activity and support of athletics, the new addition of the roof was a major improvement and a testament to the continued efforts of keeping the Pacific University campus at its best for its students.
Moving forward, Schumann is hopeful that the next improvement project will be on the Stoller Center, a facility “that was built more than forty years ago now and was built for a third or a quarter of the students that we have now,” said Schumann.
No set plans for the Stoller Center have been made yet but it is a goal for the future.
For now, the addition of the stadium roof is a step in the direction of being a part of the best facility that the university can provide for its students.
“I think that the entire complex out there now,” said Schumann. “Hanson Stadium, our baseball and softball fields now are one of the best in the conference and we are proud of that.”