POTTSVILLE, Pa. -- A historic high school sports venue that has provided lots of memories for people in Pottsville and beyond is set to receive a state grant to fix issues that the school district says need to be addressed.
Martz Hall in Pottsville is considered by many to be one of the most popular high school sports venues in northeastern and central Pennsylvania.
"We've had a lot of high school basketball playoff games come through here. The Harlem Globetrotters have played here, Bob Hope has performed here. so, people, not just in Pottsville but the greater Schuylkill County area and throughout the commonwealth, as soon as you say Martz Hall, it rings a bell and brings up a lot of memories for a lot of people," said Pottsville Area School District Superintendent Jeff Zwiebel.
The building that's been around since the 1970s has started to show its age. The roof has started to weaken, leading to leakage problems.
But there's a remedy to all of this. State rep. Neal Goodman and Gov. Tom Wolf announced that the Pottsville Area School District will receive a $1 million state grant to fix up the venue.
"The plan is to use an acrylic coating on the roof, fix all the issues that we currently have, and our roofing engineer told us this will be the best route to go and eventually, every couple of years, we can add more layers on and build the roof up, seal it up. It could last 20, 30 more years," Zwiebel said.
We spoke with two incoming senior athletes who say they're happy Martz Hall is going to be preserved. That way, other athletes for generations to come can have the same memories inside this historic building that they did.
"It's definitely a symbol of our community. Everybody knows about Martz Hall. It's really cool to play here and it's cool to get other girls to have the same experience we do," said senior Madison Dalton.
"Having the honor of calling this place home for us, it's a big deal," senior Kaile Conrad said.
The hope is that work will begin on Martz Hall sometime in the fall, but shouldn't impact any sports schedules.