The Robert W. Plaster Center at Pittsburg State University is a state-of-the-art facility that will host a variety of university and community events.
The $13 million, 154,000-square-foot facility, to be completed in Spring 2015, will include a 100-yard turf field, an 11,000-square-foot modern strength facility, a 300-meter track and seating for up to 1,500. It will also include locker rooms for men’s and women’s track & field and football, offices and meeting rooms.
University, city and state officials broke ground on the Plaster Center during a special ceremony on Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014.
The Harvey Dean Track is one of only six university owned 300-meter tracks in the nation. This incredible track is one of the primary reasons Pittsburg State was selected to host the 2016 & 2018 NCAA Division II Indoor Track Championships and the 2017 and 2019 NJCAA National Championships. Pay close attention to the surface beneath your feet as you step onto the Harvey Dean Track. You’re walking on Mondo Super X Performance; the same surface used at the 2011 Daegu World Championships and eight of the most recent Olympic Games. This prefabricated synthetic rubber track surface is comprised of two different layers that provides unparalleled support, elasticity and spike resistance.
The Harvey Dean Track also features room for nearly 1,500 spectators with a large concourse area and two raised viewing areas. It’s the perfect area to watch world-class competitions or to simply watch fellow community members exercise.
Enclosed within the Harvey Dean Track is a 100-yard-turf field. This field features Mondoturf, the same turf on which Gorilla players and coaches compete at Carnie Smith Stadium. Its size and partial end zone provide the perfect setting for situational and team drills.
As you walk across the turf field be certain to look up. A state-of-the-art netting system surrounds the entire field, allowing multiple athletic teams to practice at one time.
But this is much more than a simple practice field. This area can also host large-scale community events such as conventions, trade shows and business fairs. Two large overhead doors on the east wall provide easy access for large vehicles and trailers.
Ask anyone who played Gorilla football and they’ll tell you that the locker room is more than a storage area, it is a sanctuary reserved exclusively for those who have earned the right to wear the Gorilla uniform.
This locker room pays tribute to our proud Gorilla tradition and, in fact, shepherds it into a new era. Pay particular attention to the 120 lockers that fill the room. These lockers were designed and manufactured by Hollman, the nation’s premiere locker manufacturer. Other clients of Hollman include the Dallas Cowboys, Chicago Bulls, University of Arkansas, Oklahoma State University and Navy. Each locker includes a keyless entry pad, exotic wood veneers and USB and power outlets.
Longtime Gorilla football fans will quickly notice that the two lockers at the front of the room belong to Harlon Hill Award Winners, and Pittsburg State Hall-of-Famers, Ronnie West and Ronald Moore. The lockers have been recreated to be exactly as they were when these two Gorilla legends played at Carnie Smith Stadium.
An advanced ventilation system has been installed in this locker room to ensure a comfortable, germ-free environment.
This locker room spills out into a large multimedia room that can be configured in a variety of ways including as a team meeting area, coaching strategy sessions and much more.
First-rate equipment demands first-rate care. This room has been designed to meet the equipment maintenance needs of our football and track programs. Notice the large open spaces which allow for proper storage, the pass through door for efficient football equipment check-out and the designated work spaces for specialized projects by equipment managers.
Team uniforms are a point of pride for the athletes who wear them and the fans who cheer them on. The average NFL team can clean more than 5,500 pounds of laundry a week, and college teams produce even more. That’s more laundry in one week than the average American household does in two years!
In order to effectively clean that much laundry, you need professional-grade machinery and that’s exactly what you’ll find in the Robert W. Plaster Center. Three commercial washers and dryers line the north wall of the equipment room with ample ventilation to ensure adequate and sanitary cleaning.
The beauty of the Robert W. Plaster Center is its flexibility. Its unique design allows it to host national track championships, coaching clinics, and community events. Unlike many indoor facilities, the Plaster Center has a designated catering kitchen on-site.
This room will include equipment and additional power outlets to support mobile food preparation carts.
The placement of this room was no accident. Its location allows easy access for the delivery of meals and space for proper food preparation.
It’s the perfect room to support the wide variety of events that will be held at the Plaster Center.
This large room is much more than it appears. Its primary purpose is to provide proper storage of track and field equipment, but it has a secret. Look down and you’ll notice a wide stretch of the Harvey Dean Track extending into this room.
No, it’s not a mistake. This extension allows this room to transform into the official check-in and staging area during competitions. The track surface allows competitors to wear their spikes without endangering themselves or damaging the polished flooring. It’s an indication of the amount of planning and forethought that has gone into the design of the Robert W. Plaster Center.
The second floor is the new home of Pittsburg State’s Track & Field and Cross Country programs. The offices across from the elevator are reserved for the head coach of the men’s and women’s teams and their assistants.
The reception room, with its open layout and amazing view, provides the perfect area for coaches to greet potential recruits and their families. Each office features a wide-screen monitor and the privacy necessary to counsel and coach student-athletes.
Look across the hall and you’ll notice something new for our Track and Field and Cross Country teams. It’s a conference room and team meeting room reserved especially for members of our men’s and women’s squads. The large table and 70” wide screen monitor provides the perfect setting for team meetings, strategy sessions and performance reviews.
Quality. That’s the word to describe the lockers within these rooms. Custom-made by Hollman, the nation’s premiere athletic locker manufacture, each locker contains a power outlet and privacy lock.
Ninety-six lockers grace the walls of these two rooms and each room features advanced ventilation systems to ensure a comfortable, germ-free environment.
The technical heart of the Robert W. Plaster Center, this control room operates both the Plaster Center sound system and Crown Automotive Video Board.
Crown Automotive may be located in Lawrence but the heart of a Gorilla beats in its owner, Miles Schnaer. Miles (B.S. ’70) understands the importance of quality and his attention to detail can be seen in the size and detail of the Crown Automotive Video Board which stands nearly 16 feet tall and 29 feet wide. It provides ample space for scoring results and live, HD video feeds and offers a large viewing angle for both spectators and competitors.
Wiring for broadcast quality cameras has been put into place throughout the arena. These will be able to be remotely controlled to live stream competitions, record practice and for special events. The video board is controlled by the “LaunchPad” Clip Server and Control System.
The Plaster Center will utilize the “FinishLynx” digitized timing system and “Hy-Tek” data management program for all competitive events. Those two names may not be familiar to you, but ask any track athlete or coach and you’ll discover that they are among the best timing and data systems in the world.
It takes a lot of power to be heard clearly in a building this large. Fortunately, the Plaster Center sound system is up to the task. JBL loudspeakers, nearly 60 in all, are strategically located throughout the facility and controlled by the state-of-the-art BSS London Blu-10 touchscreen.
The room where Champions are made. Stretching across more than 11,000 square-feet of space, the ProMaxima Strength and Conditioning Center is state-of-the-art in every sense of the word.
Early in 2014, the NCAA selected Pittsburg State to host the 2016 and 2018 Men’s and Women’s Indoor Track Championships. The construction of the Plaster Center was key in the NCAA’s decision.
The Plaster Center is named for Robert W. Plaster, the founder of Empire Gas Company and a philanthropist who created the Robert W. Plaster Foundation. Established in 1983, the foundation is dedicated to helping students by funding projects for colleges and universities.
You have an opportunity to be part of a project that will positively impact Pittsburg State University and its community for generations to come. Success never happens by accident; It only occurs when determined people come together for a worthy cause.
Thank you for your consideration. Visit the PSU website to make a gift online. For further information contact:
Director of Major Gifts
Pittsburg State University
Pittsburg State University
Office of University Development
200 Shirk Hall
1701 S. Broadway
Pittsburg, KS 66762
By making a one-time gift of $1,000 (track and field) or $1,500 (football) you will help insure the success of Pittsburg State student-athletes in the classroom and on the field of competition.
Your name, or the name of a loved one, will be permanently displayed alongside a current player's name on a beautiful hand-crafted Hollman locker within Pittsburg State's Robert W. Plaster Center.
Ensure your legacy and that of the next generation of Gorillas and Reserve your locker today!