Friday Night Lights return to Edmonds after thieves damaged stadium

EDMONDS, Wash. – Friday Night Lights are back at Edmonds District Stadium.

Police say thieves damaged the stadium lights after stripping the wires for copper. Last Friday night’s football game was cancelled and rescheduled to Saturday afternoon.

“When the rug gets pulled out from under them, you know, it’s disappointing. You hate to see that,” said Coach John Gradwohl. “It affected soccer that we had on Tuesday and a lot of other programs got affected by it, not just the one game.”

Gradwohl is the head football coach at Edmonds-Woodway High School. He said the copper theft was a double loss.

“I feel bad for the person who did it, and I hate to see what kind of state they’re in to do that," he said.

Edmonds Police detectives are also investigating a copper theft at the adjacent softball field that happened just six days prior to the stadium copper theft.

“You’re talking about stealing something that has no serial number. It’s difficult to trace and can be disposed of quickly, possibly recycled or melted down,” said Edmonds Police Sgt. Shane Hawley.

The Edmonds School District says fixing the lights wasn’t cheap. The cost is estimated between $20,000 to $30,000 at the stadium and softball field.

“That’s going to come out of the school district budget or insurance as far as that goes, and if you’re a taxpayer you’re paying that bill,” said Sgt. Hawley.

If you have a tip or saw suspicious activity around the stadium the night of September 19 into the morning of September 20, you can call Edmonds Police at (425) 407-3999.

“Thankfully they got it done quickly and we’re back and running, which is awesome,” said Coach Gradwohl.

Friday’s football game between Edmonds-Woodway and Meadowdale High Schools will go on as scheduled for September 27.