SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


By Wayne Kinunen


December 06, 2007

An important responsibility of any community is to provide safe, healthy recreational opportunities for its youth and adult citizens. Ketchikan provides a great variety of activities for people. One of the most popular youth programs is soccer. The Ketchikan Youth Soccer League has provided games, coaching, training, referees and equipment for nearly 30 years. One thing KYSL has not been able to provide is an adequate field of play (in soccer terms-a pitch). The new field at Fawn Mountain is an ideal location to install an artificial turf field.

Reason to build a turf field:

1. Safety-Playing soccer on our hard surfaces is an invitation to cuts, abrasions, joint injuries and possible concussions. Our hard ground is very unforgiving on human tissue.

2. The beautiful new rubberized track at Fawn Mountain is at risk of damage due to sand and grit being blown, tracked or washed onto it. The cart was put before the horse in this case. A turf field should have preceded the track.

3. Our Public Works Department spends countless hours lining, dragging and preparing the fields for games and practice. A turf field would save many hours and many dollars of prep time.

4. It is difficult to invite other high school teams here to play our Kayhi Boy's & Girl's soccer teams because of our field surfaces. Juneau plays here reluctantly but they have to come as they are in our region. I know of no other team in the state that plays on dirt. Even Barrow has a turf field! Juneau has two and is planning a third.

5. Proper soccer skills are impossible to learn on our fields. The ball runs and bounces differently. Standing water makes for humorous and sometimes dangerous situations. Proper goal-keeping skills cannot be learned on a hard surface. Sometimes we can't practice at all due to field conditions. Therefore our teams are at a disadvantage when we travel to play on proper grass or artificial fields.

6. Other groups could use a turf field as well. Football, Special Olympics, school PE classes and more would benefit from a turf field.

7. Recreational dollars are available for this field.

Our kids deserve a quality field. Please urge your Borough Assembly members to get working on a new field as soon as possible.


Wayne Kinunen
Ketchikan, AK

About: "Involved in youth sports and activities for 26 years in Ketchikan."

Received December 06, 2007 - Published December 06, 2007


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