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"Then and Now"       

A Letter to the Editor, written by Daniel Walters

oldpic1webI remember several years ago when the Sports Park across from St. George Middle was a complete eyesore; a jungle of dilapidated tennis courts, overgrown softball field, broken parking lot, all surrounded by rusty, mangled fence.   The only activity this place saw was that of an illegal nature.  I wondered if the area could ever get back to its proper form, being of good use to our community.  Luckily, there were others who felt the same way and they had a pioneer spirit to make a difference.

These dedicated few weren’t afraid to get their hands dirty and give their spare time to rejuvenate the St. George Sports Center for our town’s benefit.  It certainly wasn’t easy work, but their passion saw them through.  As with many projects, the further it moved along, the more people started to notice.  With time, the volunteer effort grew to include people of all ages, backgrounds and interests.  Everyone began working together with the help of local organizations, elected officials and businesses.  The Sports Center is now a perfect example of a community project gone right!

On any given day, you can witness some great camaraderie taking place there.  The tennis courts might be abuzz with a Jr. Team children’s practice or maybe there’s a competitive match between adult players.  The new parking lot may be packed for an adult softball game or the field’s being used for a Little League practice.  Whatever is happening, it is such an amazing change to see, hear and enjoy the renewed activity in the Sports Center; a place where boys, girls, men and women of all ages and skill levels can be a part of something special.  All the while, they are improving relationships with community members and providing a safe haven for children to build strength, promote character and lead a fun, healthy lifestyle.  Just like the motto for Jr. Team Tennis, "Fun, Fitness, & Friends" can also be the motto behind St. George Sports Center.

Wcon1What’s more exciting is that the improvements are ongoing!  The people behind this venture keep pumping life into the project.  The Tennis Complex will nearly triple its size in the coming season, allowing for more children and adult teams, as well as USTA tournaments in our own backyard.  The Softball League continues to have a bustling season and increased game attendance.  Indeed, the hard work and dedication of those pioneers has paid off and it is something we can all take pride in. 

Whether you’re a fan of tennis, soccer, baseball, softball or football, there is a place for you to make a difference in our community.  Most importantly, we should work together and support our local sports programs, congratulating each other on our hard work and success.  After all, our programs are for the benefit of everyone, especially the younger generations.

The revitalization of the St. George Sports Center has proven that if we work together on our path to "Sports Glory," it's amazing just how much we can accomplish!  If you take a look at the new softball complex, or especially the Barbara and Grady Jones Tennis Building, you'll see exactly what I mean.

-Daniel K. Walters

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Community Development?   Yes.

 

 

 
 
 
 
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