Indoor sports facility
By Thom A. Fischer
December 17, 2007
This letter is for encouragement to parents who want more sports
opportunities for their children. Building an indoor sports
field would be one of the finest investments Ketchikan could
make in its youth.
Sports activities not only provide the obvious exercise, teambuilding,
and positive focus for our youth, but also provides lessons on
how to win, lose, and come back and win again. Skills and attitudes
learned through sports carry on throughout life.
Bellingham has an indoor arena called the Sportsplex
. The Sportsplex was designed and built by Whitewater Engineering
in about 1997, and expanded for indoor soccer in about 1999.
The Sportsplex is 77,000 sq.ft., and has two 200'x85' rinks,
one for ice and one for soccer, and a smaller 120'x60' rink used
for either ice or soccer. Since the soccer expansion, the Bellingham
Sportsplex gets over 400,000 participant visits per year. The
main soccer field is busy seven days per week from noon till
midnight. The ice rink is busy from 6 am until midnight, seven
days per week. There have been concerts on the soccer field,
auctions, arena football, trade shows, and of course soccer.
Even though the Sportsplex was built for youth, adults use the
facility more than the youth, and pay the larger share of its
income. The Sportsplex is turning away soccer teams as indoor
soccer has since grown to over 180 teams. The ice rink is full
and sold out with 30 hockey teams and 275 youth figure skaters,
and multiple other ice skating venues. In the winter there is
indoor track & field training such as pole vaulting.
Indoor soccer develops better passing, ball handling, and shooting
skills. Two years after indoor soccer side being in operation,
Bellingham high schools have dominated the state championships,
with one year, two Bellingham schools competing against themselves
for 1st and 2nd place. Adult hockey players have their own local
leagues, while youth hockey teams play in Canadian leagues.
Figure skaters compete in northwest venues.
The indoor turf "Field Turf" is about 2" thick,
with a mix of chopped rubber and silica sand as the base, and
looks like grass. The turf is forgiving, and provides a much
safer surface than the old carpets. This is the same turf that
major football fields now use.
Yes, build it and they will come. Don't miss out on this opportunity.
For further information on the Bellingham Sportsplex, contact
Marc Ronney at email@example.com or 360-733-9999.
We would be glad to provide any help we can give.
Thom A. Fischer
Tollhouse Energy Company
Received December 15, 2007
- Published December 17, 2007
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