Advertisement

Archive for Wednesday, November 6, 1996

ATHLETIC COMPLEX OPENS

November 6, 1996

Advertisement

Children can still sign up for the second session of basketball, volleyball, roller hockey and indoor soccer leagues at the new Sport 2 Sport athletic complex.

It didn't bother the more than 500 youngsters who made their way to Sport 2 Sport on Saturday that the new athletic facility's entrance and concession stands weren't completely constructed.

In fact, they probably didn't even notice, with all of the basketball games and other sporting events going on inside.

Sport 2 Sport, 5200 Clinton Pkwy., opened its doors Saturday for the first day of youth basketball league games and instruction. Roger Morningstar, president of Sport 2 Sport, said he hopes to have the remainder of the building complete within a month.

"We're very anxious to get the offices and the rest of the building finished soon," said Morningstar, a former Kansas University basketball player who lives in Lawrence.

The complex got its name because its facilities, including outdoor fields and indoor courts, can be adapted and used for several sports. The 30,000-foot complex houses a large court that can be transformed from three basketball courts to a large adult soccer arena, two youth-size hockey rinks or any number of other combinations.

In addition to athletic courts, the facility has -- or soon will have -- locker rooms, a snack bar, a study area, video arcade and offices. Plans are on the drawing board to establish a social in-line skating session, Morningstar said.

"We want to add the convenience factor for families with just one place for all of the activities," he said.

A variety of adult sports leagues are scheduled to start soon. Sport 2 Sport emphasizes instruction, athletic leagues and tournaments, he said, such as a 200-team youth girls and boys basketball tournament scheduled during winter break.

"We got almost 700 kids in our first go-round. We're real happy with that," he said. "The hardest thing is to get the word out that we're open."

A group of 12 investors, including Roy Williams, KU basketball coach and Danny Manning, former KU All-American and current NBA star, helped initiate the $2.2 million sports project.

KU coaches and other qualified coaches will be a part of the instruction at Sport 2 Sport, including former KU baseball coach Dave Bingham, who will lead the baseball instruction program.

The outdoor softball and baseball fields opened this summer.

Families from Topeka, Kansas City and other surrounding communities have signed up for leagues at Sport 2 Sport.

"We hope to create a center where kids compete from all over northeast Kansas at one central location. But there's a lot of things left to do," Morningstar said, adding that he has spent a few long nights getting the building ready for the children.

After the sports complex is up and running, Morningstar will begin adding corporate sponsors to a list of five already signed on for the venture. He has also started a foundation to help families who need financial assistance.

"We're real fired up about the whole concept. There's just not enough hours in the day to do everything," he said.

Eventually, Morningstar plans to take the Sport 2 Sport concept nationally.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.