CANTON - Canton varsity football coach, Jay Perry, provided an illuminating update at the last school board meeting about the effort to get lighting for the football field.

Speaking during the public comment period at the end of the meeting, Perry told the board that a representative of Musco Lighting recently provided an estimate for the cost for the lighting.

The project would involve the purchase of four lighted poles, which would be installed at Miller A. Moyer Field. According to Perry, the goal is to have the lights installed in time for the football season this year.

Up until now, Canton's home games have been played at 1:30 p.m. on Saturdays.

Perry said the original lighting cost, $215,000, which was cited, was high, but he noted that it was whittled down to $138,500. He thanked district business manager Mark Jannone for his "negotiation skills" in getting the price down. Also, he said the school board several years ago had the forethought of putting in conduits when the track was done, thus cutting down the costs for the lighting project.

Perry noted that there were three options available, power-wise: 30, 40 and 50 candle power. He thought the 50 candle power option would be "overkill," and suggested that the 40 candle power strength - which is the basis for the price quote - be pursued.

He noted that the 40 candle power strength would be only $10 an hour in electricity costs, which would be a reasonable price for community organizations if they wanted to use the field.

After 25 years, Musco would replace all the light bulbs, he said.

As for the effort to raise the money for the lighting, Perry said he had an "overwhelming positive response from the community."

He said that he gets phone calls and emails almost every day.

Among those who have expressed interest in providing financial support are CUDD, Cuz Excavating, Dandy, the Moose Family Center, First Citizens Bank and Hoover's Hardware in Troy. He said Hoover's has committed to $1,000, and a couple people have already donated $1,000. He said that smaller donations, such as $50 or $100, are also appreciated and are important, because this shows the support of the community.

"Everybody gives at their level," he said, when asked for comment by The Daily Review.

Perry is also donating his coach salary and some of the other coaches are donating portions of their salaries for the lighting project next school year, he added.

Perry was encouraged that, with Hoover's, someone from the Troy community was getting behind the project.

In addition, Perry said there is a potential for a "sizable donor" to step forward.

"He wants to see more community support, which I do as well, because this is a community project," he said, when asked for comment.

"We're really looking at this as a community thing, not just a football thing."

According to Perry, a fundraising dinner to raise money for the project will be held from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday, April 21, at the Canton Moose.

Anyone wanting to make a donation to the lighting project should call Perry at (570) 244-8949.

Perry also thought that naming rights and advertisements on the score board and stadium were an option that could be considered to raise money.

He said another way that money could be raised is to have a Corporate Night in which a company sponsors a game.

Perry also provided information about the games this fall. He said the first game will be the Hall of Fame Game; the second will be Youth and Veteran Appreciation Night; the third will be Homecoming Night; and the fourth will be Band Appreciation Night.

At the same time, he announced that the marching band would be re-established in Canton next school year.

Perry noted that there is a man in Towanda who wants to pay for the Mansfield University band to play on Band Appreciation Night. Perry was also encouraged that someone from Towanda was supporting Canton.

Of the man, who is being kept anonymous for now, Perry noted that this individual never got to play an instrument when he was young, and wants to now be supportive of music.

Perry said that another man wants to pay $9,000 for football uniforms.

Also, Perry said that he wants to hold the Old Shoe Game, the last home game, on a Saturday afternoon, as a throwback to tradition. He noted that the district is also bringing back the Canton Warrior on the football helmets.

The board gave Perry permission to continue his efforts.

Perry said that there is interest in the football program, with 63 kids in grades 9-12 scheduled to participate. He said the total is 74 kids, when grades 8-12 are taken into consideration.

He also noted that he is getting the football players involved in the community, noting that they will help with getting the War Memorial Pool open in May. He said he is working with Amy Seeley, borough administrator, on this project. He said they would clean, paint and pull weeds to get it ready to open for the first day.

Eric Hrin can be reached at (570) 297-5251; email: reviewtroy@thedailyreview.com.