Elder’s PAC flourishes as a tribute to alumni

The beautiful facility was made possible by generous donors and hard work.

Aerial view of Elders PAC shows the fantastic facilities made possible by generous donations.

Elder archives

Aerial view of Elder’s PAC shows the fantastic facilities made possible by generous donations.

The Panther Athletic Complex is a place where every kid wants to play. The PAC is a state-of-the-art complex with all athletic needs provided. However, there is no PAC without the man who helped tremendously: Butch Hubert.

He is the reason the ‘Butch Hubert Family Panther Athletic Complex’ originates.  Construction on the PAC had reached a standstill due to funding. When Butch was a student, he had to work for his family business, so he was unable to participate in sporting events as most Elder students dream of doing. He learned from Elder though, and one of the things he learned was “to give back.”

Elder gives many students and families a second home. One wouldn’t fully understand this concept until they come through here. Butch Hubert, being the philanthropist he is, donated not some of the necessary funds, but the remainder of the funding needed to complete the project. Butch and the rest of the Huber family gave students the final push towards the finish line of the PAC. This is one the best parts about Elder: alumni. They enjoyed their time here so much that they have no problem giving back to the school that has made them who they are.

The Panther Athletic Complex is a 65-acre piece of land from which 300,000 cubic feet of dirt had to be moved for construction to be completed.  It is a place where many of Elder’s sports teams compete. The multimillion-dollar complex was finished in 2014, after years of work.

Before this gem was completed, Elder baseball had to travel to local landmarks like Oskamp, Dunham Recreational Complex and Hille Field to play games. Meanwhile, soccer played in The Pit. Now, the PAC is the home for both of these sports as well as many others. Baseball, Soccer, Tennis, and Track & Field all use the complex for practices as well as home games. Even Seton conducts some of their home competitions at the Pac. Without the donations of generous Alumni, this never would have happened.

The baseball stadium alone was a $500,000 undertaking. It is now named “Jack Adams Stadium” in honor of Mr. Adams’s generous gift and match deal with Elder. The project was a decade long, and it is a sight to see. The stadium design is based off Nischwitz Stadium at Wright State University near Dayton, Ohio. The ornate brick gateway also strongly resembles our own Elder High School since the design is similar to the school’s edifice.

Facade at Jack Adam baseball complex at the PAC resembles the architecture of Elder itself. (Kathy Hirth)

There are three sections of seating behind home plate, and some fans even enjoy sitting under the scoreboard on the hill in left field. Not many high school baseball stadiums in the area are as nice as Elder’s, and it is amazing for all participants in the Elder Baseball program to have the opportunity not only to see the field daily but to practice and play on it as well.

There is no place in the city like 1915 Quebec Road in Price Hill. Sitting atop that hill makes it appear as if the whole community has Elder on its back, and in a way, it does. These things are only possible because of the Purple Nation. At the end of the day, graduates enjoy putting their money back into this school because they loved it here and want to give back to the purple and the white. Similarly, the idea of community connection is what is unique about Price Hill also; most people love it here and will support it for their entire lives.

Permanent stands and dugouts make baseball at the PAC a special occasion. (Elder archives)

Coach Nate Brown, one of these community members, answered a few questions about the PAC. He is a former Elder baseball player, current English teacher, and head JV Coach. He has also lived in Price Hill his whole life.

When asked why he wishes he had the opportunity to play at the PAC he said, “Obviously because it’s beautiful!” He wishes he had the indoor facility that the PAC has for offseason work. Prior to, players hit in the fieldhouse, under the horseshoe of The Pit, and various garages throughout the city. Next, Coach reflected on why he returned to Elder, stating “the expectations are higher.” He loves the tradition of Elder Baseball. At other schools he has coached, there was a lack of expectations.

I asked him his favorite part of the Panther Athletic Complex; he said he loves how impressed visiting teams are: “The large dugouts, the scoreboard, and a press box behind home plate just blows people away.” Lastly, because he is a Price Hill native, I asked him his favorite part about Price Hill.

Coach Brown said he loves Price Hill because “it’s a midpoint from the city and the suburbs. It has incredible history. This is where I was raised, this is where I started my family. You get people from all walks of life, and it’s just real. You know what you’re going to get.”

As Elder High School begins its celebrations for its 100th year in Price Hill, one cannot help but reflect on the comradery of not only the school itself but its community as well. Our hardworking, blue-collar attitude and work ethic has pushed Elder for 100 years strong and will hopefully continue to do so for many centuries to follow!