Soccer fields are under way

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By Bryan Marshall

The Grant County fiscal court set as one of their priorities making sure that the children of Grant County have ample opportunities to play.

With a unanimous vote during their Aug. 3 meeting, the fiscal court approved the purchase of land that will become a soccer park for the Grant County Youth Soccer League.

“There is a huge need as it is an ever-growing sport,” Judge-Executive Darrell Link said. “They haven’t had a home. They’ve been playing on whatever level surface they could find and they needed a home. We hope to have it completed, meaning that it will be seeded and have straw on it, this fall so that it can grow and mature this winter. We’ll take a look next spring to see if it’s ready, but we have to see how the winter season goes.”

The land, located on Eibeck Lane in Williamstown, was purchased from Mount Olivet Church. The fiscal court purchased 13.046 acres from the church for $7,000 an acre for a total of $95,000.

Other costs for the park are excavating, seeding and straw once the fields have been seeded. Coppage Construction was the low bidder with a bid of $231,500.

The fiscal court had $185,000 in their budget for recreational projects and during their Oct. 5 meeting, they made a budget amendment for the rest of the funding.

The initial construction on the field will allow for back-to-back regulation soccer fields.

“We saw a great need to ensure that we have ample recreational facilities that were central to the population base of Grant County,” Link said. “For a long time, we’ve been focusing on other infrastructure needs, such as water and sanitation. We’ve tried to step up to provide recreational opportunities for our senior citizens. For too long, our children have been on the back burner and we haven’t appropriately met their needs. I think we can say the time is now and the opportunity is here.”

The youth soccer league currently plays their games on the fields behind Dry Ridge Elementary, but are excited to have a facility of their own.

“It’s huge for the league and for the county,” GCYSL president David Blaine said. “We have over 300 children and the league continues to grow. It’s great for the youth of the county. We’re excited for the future.”

The fiscal court will continue to focus on recreational opportunities for the county’s youth as their next priorities will be to build a little league complex at Grant County Park in Crittenden and then a spray park somewhere in the Dry Ridge area.

“There’s no question that we’ll build both of those, but the only question is when it will happen,” Link said. “I think it will be a reality in the next two to three years. We’re still gathering information and assessing the community’s response.”