After several big fundraisers including a Baxter Black event in March and the recent Wild Goose Chase, nearly all hurdles have been cleared to start construction of the planned youth soccer field on a vacant lot near the Lake County School District #7 office in Lakeview.
Plans for a proper soccer field have been established for some time, with a fundraising goal of around $60,000 to cover the cost of construction and sod to build a multi-purpose field for the ever-growing sport. The field could also be used for football practices and community events.
At the most recent Town of Lakeview Planning Commission, the plans for construction of the field were approved, with some stipulations. Specification of types of trees to be planted, landscaping revisions, and an expansion to six feet of a planned handicap accessibility path from the LCSD#7 parking lot to the fields were among the items requested for the plans.
Following the recent fundraisers, Rotary Club of Lakeview has raised approximately $32,000 for the project, with plans to hold several more fundraisers to also go towards the soccer field.
“I think we have enough to get started, and maybe some other groups will be interested in making this one of their projects as well,” said Darryl Anderson, president of Anderson Engineering & Surveying and Rotary Club member. “The biggest expense is the sod, but that is the last piece. We hope to get started by mid-August.”
The first steps will be grading of the soil and installation of sprinkler systems. While Anderson doesn’t believe the field will be ready in time for the start of school, he predicts the project could be completely finished in time for next year’s soccer season.
“Lots of incidentals come up, things we haven’t planned for,” warned Anderson, also a member of the LCSD#7 school board.
With the growth of the AYSO youth soccer programs in Lake County and Lakeview High School adding competitive soccer teams to their list of sports for 2014, the demand for a proper soccer facility in Lakeview continues to rise. Currently youth programs utilize the nearby baseball and softball fields, less than ideal grounds for soccer according to organizers.