2 Full-Size Fields
Plus A Pavilion
Are Part Of Facility
BY O.J. EARLY
A new recreation venue -- in the works since at least 2005 -- will soon serve Greene County.
The Greeneville-Greene County Sports Complex on Hal Henard Road will host its first softball games on Sept. 9, according to Lisa Fisher, Greeneville Parks and Recreation Department executive assistant.
The more-than-half-a-million-dollar facility includes two-multi purpose fields, a pavilion with restrooms, a concession stand, and a covered area with five picnic tables.
The complex borders the Greene County Tennis Center.
Adults will play the first softball games at the new complex, Fisher said.
Adult teams will be the primary participants at the site, although youth teams will have the chance to play, too, she added.
Fisher said adjusting temporary fences at the Hal Henard Road complex will allow youth teams to use the facility.
"It gives us more room to expand our programs," Fisher said of the complex's completion. "It also gives us an opportunity to expand Hardin Park to all-youth fields."
Having more ballfields to advertise will also benefit the county economically, according to Greene County Partnership Tourism Director Tammy Kinser.
"Having two additional fields like these to promote to prospective groups and add to our inventory is going to help Greeneville and Greene County," Kinser said.
"Our current inventory limited us on the amount of teams that we could host, therefore limiting our number of 'heads in beds' as tourism directors relate to as our goal."
Kinser added, "I am excited to be able to work with the Parks and Recreation Department on future tournaments/championships that we can host at the new complex."
Parks and Recreation Director Butch Patterson has also voiced support for expanding the complex if funds are available.
The complex's path to completion hasn't been without snags.
The site was supposed to open last August, and has been planned since at least 2005.
"We had trouble with grass on some of the fields," Fisher said. "We attributed that to some of the sprays that might have been used when the fields were cornfields."
But, she added, "We solved that problem."
Inclement weather has also slowed the process of getting the complex ready for use, Fisher said.
The bulk of the funding for the project came via state grants. Donating $50,000 apiece were the Town of Greeneville and Greene County.
And now, the complex is ready for business -- and play.
"We'll start with our adult league Sept. 9," she said. "Hopefully, we'll be able to recruit both youth and adult tournaments."