Keeping Facilities Green and Clean
When it comes to the Waukee Grounds Crew, there’s no messing around.
“We expect everything to be perfect all of the time,” says Waukee Grounds Coordinator Seth Triplett.
That’s a tough task with everything on their plate.
“It’s anything outside. Grounds, snow removal, that’s all our responsibility,” says Triplett.
Two Grounds Crew Teams
The crew is divided up into two teams based on responsibility. The building team and the athletic team.
“Most of the time, if it’s really nice people will notice it, if it’s not nice people will notice it,” adds Triplett. “We obviously want to be on the really nice side of that.”
The building team is working hard this summer across the district. One of their most recent projects is an outside classroom at Radiant Elementary.
“They take a lot of pride in that,” says Triplett. “They don’t like it if someone finds something they missed or some minor mistake. That’s obviously not what they are here for.”
Alex Miller is on the athletic grounds team at Northwest High School and has been growing grass from the get-go.
“Obviously you want to come to a school that looks aesthetically pleasing,” says Miller.
Miller adds every day is game day for his team. If the field isn’t game ready, their job isn’t complete.
“You’ve got to get up to get a field ready for a game and then as soon as it’s over, you have to get it wrapped up and ready for the next day,” says Miller. “It’s a never ending process. Whether it’s football, baseball, soccer, or lacrosse club, it’s just a lot of work but we absolutely love what we do.”
Just like the players on the field, the grounds crew also looks at game tape. They spend time looking at drone photos, figuring out where they’ll be focusing on next.
“We know that high traffic areas are going to be more compact, which means the grass is not going to respond as it should,” says Miller. “We will see hot spots, dark spots, that we know we’ll need to address that before it gets too bad.”
New Challenges Each Year
We have some pretty amazing facilities in our district, thanks to the time, effort and dedication of our grounds crew.
“With adding the new schools, it’s new challenges,” says Miller. “Nothing is mundane about this job. It’s something that will change every year and we are up for the challenge.”