Miracle Field coming to Lakewood Park in Phenix City
Big news for phenix city, a new baseball field aimed at giving everyone a chance at hitting the diamond is on it’s way, and it’s the only one of it’s kind in the entire Chattahoochee Valley.
COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Big news for Phenix City, a new baseball field aimed at giving everyone a chance at hitting the diamond is on its way, and it’s the only one of its kind in the entire Chattahoochee Valley.
Miracle Field, a project in the works for some time now, will be an inclusive baseball field. City leaders say it will be a place where kids with disabilities can come and play the game of baseball in a safe environment.
“It’s made for ADA accessibility, which means it can be a wheelchair, walker, crutches, whatever these children use to be mobile, this surface allows that to happen.”, said Parks and Recreation Director Todd Hughes.
Last year, the city showed they’re ready to play ball by putting up half a million dollars to go into the project. With the help of state representative Chris Blackshear, they’re one step closer to breaking ground on the first field of its kind for all kids in the Chattahoochee Valley.
“Every kid, unfortunately, is not going to be able to run to first base or hit a ball or shoot a basket, or go down the slide the way most kids you assume they are, and this is just very special because every kid deserves an opportunity to enjoy a quality of life, and having this miracle park is going to be able to do that for these kids.”, said Blackshear. “One of my main responsibilities in Montgomery is to let the rest of the state know that Phenix City is in Alabama. We’re not a bedroom community or sub-division of Columbus, Georgia, so to have that here for us is... it’s good to be first at something one time instead of always feeling like you’re playing catch up.”
“I want to present you guys with a $500,000 matching check to what you guys have which gives us $1 million to break ground on this project.”, said Blackshear at Tuesday’s city council meeting.
Blackshear recalls a meeting with city leaders a few months back to discuss a way to raise the money to get the ball rolling on the park. He remembers the city manager telling him how they had part of the money set aside for the park and needed to raise the rest.
“And we had the conversation of... well, I’m fortunate enough now to be on the general fund committee. I’m vice chair of the general fund committee, and I said what happens if you can save that money and use it to apply for future grants if I can find some money at the state level to put with yours to break ground on this project and he said yes.”, said Blackshear.
Parks and Rec Director Todd Hughes says the field isn’t like traditional fields. There’s no grass or dirt on it like the one’s already in Lakewood Park, where it will go.
“The surface will have an impact continuation, so if they fall, they won’t be falling on concrete. It’s a soft rubbery type surface.”, said Hughes.
Right now, there’s no timetable on when construction will start on the new field, but city leaders are meeting this week with an architect to hash out the details. They also say there’s no cap on how much money they will need for the field, so they encourage the entire community to feel free to chip in.
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