Washington Water Power has donated $15,000 to the soccer and softball complex now under construction at Plante’s Ferry Park.
The sum is enough to build a soccer field. It also signals the start of building the second phase of the project.
Phase one, which includes five soccer fields and five softball fields, will be complete and ready for use in October 1999. Funding and in-kind contributions for that part of the project have reached $1.1 million.
Funding for eight of the nine fields in phase two is still up in the air. Organizer Gib Brumback is working with local corporations, hoping to find a business sponsor for each field.
The utility’s decision to help the complex was no snap judgment.
“Traditionally, it wasn’t something we would look at,” said Doug Kelley, customer advocate for WWP. But discussions led WWP to look at the Valley’s needs and at WWP’s role as a good neighbor.
“Soccer is a growing sport and it certainly is a family oriented sport,” Kelley said.
The entire complex is expected to open in two years. Although the softball and first five soccer fields will be planted this spring or summer, no games will be played at the complex in 1998.
“We will maintain and allow the fields to grow this year,” said Wyn Birkenthal, county parks and recreation manager.
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