Major changes are underway for two of Barton Community College's spring sports teams as ground has been broken for field facelifts of both the baseball and softball programs facilities.
Approved by the College's Board of Trustees at its September 11 meeting, general contractor Venture Corporation began work this week in preparation of the installation of AstroTurf. Replacing the entire infield of Lawson-Biggs Field with new synthetic turf, the softball field will get a complete overhaul to an artificial surface. Accommodating fencing and concrete is also underway with Eldridge Fencing and Eakin Enterprises earning the contract.
Matching funds made the project a reality with a host of supporting donors stepping forward to split the cost with the College.
"Support from the Barton County community has always played a key role in the success of this College," said Barton President Dr. Carl Heilman. "Contributors to the AstroTurf project understand this association and they are reinforcing Barton's success and the impact it has on student recruitment and student success in the classroom and on the field."
Citing increased safety of its student-athletes, allowing for increased hosting and usability of the facilities, enhancement of its student-athletes experience, and giving Barton an added recruitment tool are all made possible by the College and following donors: Kip and Kelly Spray, Craig and Jolene Biggs, Rob and Kelly Bowman, Rick and Lois Ball, Loren and Gayle Unruh of the Best Western Angus Inn, Marmie Auto Group, and BTI (Bucklin Tractor & Implement Company.
"I can't thank the donors who have contributed to this project enough," remarked Athletic Director Trevor Rolfs. "Projects of this magnitude are simply not possible in most cases without financial support from private donors. The generosity of these donors, all who have contributed to the college on multiple occasions, is simply heartfelt."
The installation of AstroTurf's Rootzone Diamond Blend OPS product, the Cougars will enjoy a 1.5" cut surface famed for combining the targeted clay areas and emulating the natural grass feel and performance.
"Many athletic facility improvements have been made possible at Barton over the course of the last five years largely contributed to the giving of others," said Rolfs. "Combined with commitment from Barton administration and our board of trustees, this opportunity to provide much safer, state of the art facilities conducive to hosting a multitude of events without cancelations or postponements is now real, while also allowing our athletic programs to compete on superior playing surfaces. Additionally, the newly renovated baseball & softball facilities will become much more aesthetically pleasing while enhancing recruiting efforts that will attract elite level student athletes. All of this has been made possible through the generosity of so many. For that, the entire athletic department here is truly grateful."
The inventor of synthetic turf, AstroTurf is one of the most iconic brands in American sports with over 50 years of experience including a list of 80% of all NCAA Division I schools with turf. To learn more, visit AstroTurf.com