DUQUESNE (KDKA) – They were old, run down and downright dangerous. However, the bleachers at the Duquesne High School Stadium now have new life.

The stadium used to be home to the Duquesne Dukes’ football team.

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But, 10 years ago, Duquesne High School closed and the stadium has been going downhill ever since.

That is, until now.

Dozens of volunteers spent this weekend hard at work repairing and replacing the old, rotting, and rundown bleachers.

“We have babies, from the age of 2 years old walking around on these bleachers. So, as an organization, we felt like it was our responsibility to get it to a place where our families can come and be safe and comfortable,” Rev. Eric Ewell, of the Duquesne Youth Athletic Association, said.

The Duquesne Youth Athletic Association is now using the field after the school district recently leased it to the organization.

The president of the association made a post about the bleachers falling apart on Facebook. A Sam’s Club manager read it and stepped in.

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“We’ve got to give back to the community. These are the people that are future employees, future customers, they’re right here, so that’s why we’re here,” Sam’s Club’s Shane Haynie said.

Sam’s Club contributed more than 7,000 to the project, plus a lot of man power. Other businesses also donated materials.

Athletic association leaders say the work means so much.

“We try to build these kids’ character, keep them off the streets and keep them out of trouble and by us having the Duquesne Youth Athletic Association, that gives them time to participate and have something to do,” Clinton Scott said.

“The youth football is one of the longest standing organizations in our community that serves the youth, 17 years strong, and if parents don’t come and watch the kids, it will be very detrimental,” Rev. Ewell said.

A formal opening of the stadium is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 29.

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