You could help destroy Harris and Shupe

Staff Report

You could take “the first bite” out of Harris or Shupe elementary schools when demolition begins.

Winners for each building will be chosen via raffle to help knock down the walls of the old schools.

The Amherst Schools Educational Foundation is holding the raffle as a fundraiser. Three “bites” will be raffled off for each building.

To be eligible, you must be at least 18 years old.

Tickets are $10 each or six for $50. They may be purchased from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday at the Amherst board of education office, 185 Forest St., or at the foundation’s page at

“It’s a great way to have people feel like their involved,” said ASEF president Duane Neidert.

He plans to have a gallery where spectators can watch the countdown to demolition.

Few details are solid at this point. Icon Construction, which will oversee the destruction of the buildings, will take over the Harris and Shupe properties July 1. Based on what workers find inside, demo days will be scheduled between mid-August or late September.

Watch for more details in the News-Times in the coming weeks.

How will demolition be carried out? It won’t be via explosives or wrecking ball.

As much as you might want to swing a huge steel ball into the side of your old school, it’s not going to happen.

Demolition managers have told us in the past that wrecking balls look cool but send debris flying in all directions at dangerous speeds. The last thing they want is for chunks of concrete and brick to go airborne.

Instead, the buckets of large diggers and loaders are typically used to knock down walls.

Money from the ASEF fundraiser will go toward technology projects at the Amherst Schools. Neidert said one hope is to fund the transformation of the Amherst Junior High School library into a creative learning center similar to the new facility at Steele High.

For more information, call AJHS principal Ryan Coleman at 440-988-0324 or reach out to Neidert via the ASEF Facebook page or 440-282-1445.

Staff Report