“I guess one of the main reasons was the age and location of Miller Stadium in relation to the rest of the school property,” he said. “Not only that, the most important thing was during that time everyone was trying to build stadiums and utilize the new artificial turf. That has been a tremendous saving in water and irrigation. It also provided opportunities to increase income from the use of the stadium, not only from tickets sales at the gate for home games, but also taking advantage of playoff games.”
Because Ruelas was not on the school board at the time, he could not speculate on any economic projections or if money generated by the stadium has exceeded expectations. However, he said based on feedback he’s received from local business owners, the impact has been tremendous.
“I can tell you from my point of view now, based on individual business owners and owners of local restaurants, that they are like, ‘Who’s playing? Who’s coming to town this week,’” he said. “Sales, when we have games like that, are up. The same goes for when we do tournaments in other sports, whether it’s junior high basketball, track or even baseball or softball tournaments. People coming to town from various other communities take advantage of the restaurants and the shopping we have to offer here.”
Although many locals, including Ruelas, look back fondly at the Rams’ former field at historic Miller Stadium, Ruelas said “it was time” to build a new home for Rams football. And if nostalgia is the only downside to one of the tallest structures in Mineral Wells that generates more income than the city has seen in years, it would appear the school board absolutely made the right decision.