Mt. Carmel High School recently announced that, for the first time in its storied history, all home football games will be played at 64th and Dante streets, bringing “Friday Night Lights” to Mt. Carmel’s campus.

Through the generous support of a Mt. Carmel alumnus, renovations are underway to create a home stadium for the Caravan.

Soccer, lacrosse and rugby teams will also utilize the stadium as their home field. The upgraded facilities will also provide opportunities to host post-season games on campus.

“Gately Stadium was a wonderful part of our football history, but our own stadium on campus will enhance the Mt. Carmel experience for our players, fans and alumni,” said Dan LaCount, Mt. Carmel athletic director.

The Barda-Dowling Stadium at Carey Field honors three Mt. Carmel families. Jim Barda #38 (1963) and Kevin Dowling #57 (1996) are the only two players in the history of Mt. Carmel football whose jersey numbers have been retired; both died as members of the Caravan football team.

The original practice field was dedicated in the 1990s, through the generosity of the Carey Family (Jean, Honey, Tom Class of 1951, Bob ’53, Judy and Tony ’61) in honor of their father, Robert F. Carey, Sr.

“Our main building has been renovated to reflect the state-of-the-art technology needs for educating young men in the 21st century. The stadium project is a further example of our commitment to the young men who attend Mt. Carmel. This investment complements the exciting growth taking place in the Woodlawn neighborhood. Within walking distance, our students will have convenient access to the new Obama Presidential Center, the Tiger Woods-designed PGA golf course and many new businesses,” said Ned Hughes, president of Mt. Carmel.

The first varsity football game in the new stadium will be played on Friday, Aug. 30, at 7:30 p.m., against Calumet High School of Gary, Ind.