With the upcoming renovations to the DakotaDome in Vermillion, the South Dakota High School Activities Association has outlined a plan to move the 2019 football championships to Brookings.

The DakotaDome has hosted the South Dakota high school football championships since 1981, but upcoming renovations could move the championships out of Vermillion for the first time. The west side of the dome, the side where the student section and band typically are, will be unavailable as USD puts permanent seating in. That will cut the maximum attendance down to about 5,200 seats.

With seating limited, the SDHSAA has taken the first steps to find a different venue just for the 2019 championships. The SDHSAA contacted South Dakota State about the availability of Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium the weekend of November 14-16, 2019.

According to Item 14 in the SDHSAA Board of Directors meeting agenda, SDSU is available to host the championships but can only do so on November 14 and 15 since they have a scheduled home game on November 16. If the SDHSAA moves the championships to Brookings, all seven classes would be played between those two dates.

The tentative agreement between the two schools includes the following language according to Item 14:

  • SDSU is willing to host the SDHSAA State Championships in 2019 on November 14 & 15 at a rate significantly reduced as compared to the contracted amount for rental of the
    DakotaDome. Approximate price is yet to be determined, as grant and other outside funding options are continuing to be explored.
  • The SDHSAA would retain all ticketing revenue from the event, SDSU would retain all
    concessionaire (food, drink, t-shirts, programs, etc.) revenue as well as sales of premium seating packages above/beyond the SDHSAA ticket value (notably this includes suite sales –SDHSAA would still receive full ticket price, SDSU would keep overages; this is the same as other venue policy)
  • SDSU would provide the SDHSAA a full-service championship event, inclusive of all game day operations, ticketing, facilities, parking, custodial and hospitality services, etc., under the coordination of SDHSAA and SDSU administrative staff
  • Contests would be played throughout the day on each Thursday the 14th and Friday the 15th. No contests would be played on Saturday the 16th.
  • No alcohol will be permitted to be served on the premises (including suite and club areas) during the SDHSAA championships
  • The agreement would be specific to the 2019 Championships only. Consideration for future dates would occur at a later time.

Important to note that the staff has recommended approval from the Board of Directors to move forward with this plan and to put the state championships in Brookings for 2019. A formal contract will be presented in April 2019 with a final vote coming during the SDHSAA Board of Directors meetings in June 2019.

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