Advertisements to unfurl at stadium

Selectman David Clune has led a drive to sell advertisements at Wilton High School’s stadium all the way to the finish line.

After a year of study and preparation, the Board of Selectmen will conduct a pilot for advertising or corporate sponsorship at Wilton’s Memorial Stadium and Lilly Field for Fall 2017 and Spring 2018, according to action of the Board of Selectmen on Aug. 21 at town hall.

Money raised from selling ads, including printed banners visible to the home and guest bleachers, could help pay for maintenance of the new turf field installed last summer, according to Clune.

“If you get  20 companies participating, you’re looking at a considerable amount of money,” as much as $40,000 to $60,000, Clune said in his initial presentation to the selectmen a year ago.

Clune said he and several others have been looking into it, after noticing that neighboring Ridgefield sells ads at its high school stadium, Tiger Hollow.

The selectmen appeared at first open to the concept of selling advertising, but some, including Dick Dubow, had questions a year ago about who would be responsible for ruling on which ads are appropriate or not.

In response Clune drew up a pilot policy for advertising and sponsorship as a guideline that he introduced Monday night:

  • Political ads and candidate ads will not be allowed, according to the policy.

  • All advertising or corporate sponsorship must be from a legitimately established company or nonprofit organization.

  • Signs must conform to the requirements and restrictions for advertising in the local schools.

The reception for the idea was warm.

“It does sound good to me. I’d like to see it go forward,” said  Selectman Michael P. Kaelin.

Clune will lead a group of three that will lead the advertising sales efforts at the stadium.