GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) — In the Pilgrim Lutheran School gym, the sound of basketballs hitting the hardwood is the soundtrack of a new era.
“We used to have plastic tiling that would snap together,” JJ Schultz, Athletic Director and a teacher at the school explained. “It would take the ball, any time you would bounce a ball on it, and the ball would just kind of die on it.”
The new wooden flooring is now being put to good use by student-athletes. The gym hosts volleyball matches and basketball games, as well as daily PE classes, men’s leagues, and is used for Sunday School activities.
The flooring was donated by the county from the Brown County Arena.
“If there’s stuff in there that actually could be used, the county tried to find ways for us to put that back to use,” County Executive Troy Strekenbach said.
Schultz said the school had inquired about the flooring and found out on a Wednesday in April that they could take it.
“They said, ‘Yeah, you can have it, but you’ve got to get it out by Monday,'” Schultz remembers.
The school collected the flooring and installed it over the summer.
“When we got it, it was in stacks,” Shultz said. “Normally you’d plan a couple years in advance for something like this, but when you get a gift as large as we did in the floor, you need to take advantage of this now.”
With the heavy lifting done, the school is happy with their new hardwood.
“This is permanent, so it’ll expand and contract, but it won’t shift,” Schultz said. “It’s so heavy it’s staying right where it’s at and the rebound off the floor is good for the joints.”
The new floor has proven to be good for the athlete and the gym’s aesthetics.
“We’ve painted and made that just basically brand new,” Schultz said. “It feels so much bigger and it’s a little bit louder in here as well. And we love the smell.”
It’s the smell of maple floors and a legacy that will live on.
“We can say, ‘Oh yeah, it used to be just right over there by Lambeau Field, and here we have a piece of it,'” Shultz said. “It’s just a huge blessing that we have it.”