Archive for Friday, January 13, 2006

Support PLAY

January 13, 2006


To the editor:

There is a current effort being lead by PLAY to fund a feasibility study to determine the current and future needs for a state-of-the-art multisport facility in our community. PLAY stands for Partners for Lawrence Athletics and Youth. I am writing to urge you to help communicate the need for all Douglas County residents to become a supporter for this effort.

I am a coach and member of the Kaw Valley Soccer Assn. KVSA serves more than 1,400 Douglas County children. KVSA is a nonprofit, fee-based organization. While we currently have soccer fields to practice and play on at the YSI complex, these fields are overused. There currently is no adequate source of revenues to improve the YSI fields short of increasing fees to a prohibitive level. Also, KVSA holds two annual competitive soccer tournaments that bring teams into Lawrence from all over Kansas and neighboring states. These tournaments have the potential to grow, bringing enormous benefits to the Lawrence community. But YSI is limited by inadequacy of the existing fields for competitive play.

Lawrence lags behind just about every other community in the number and quality of the existing sports facilities. PLAY's proposal would remedy all that and unite the community around the common purpose of providing all Douglas County youth with adequate facilities to enjoy and compete in all sports, indoor and outdoors. I strongly urge readers to support this effort.

Kelly Ryan,



Legend 11 years, 10 months ago

This is a credible business project for Lawrence and Douglas County.

The "profit" in this case goes to business owners in Lawrence and its citizens. Large state, regional and national tournaments are hosted at a facility such as the one proposed. The families that come stay in our hotels, eat in our restaurants and shop in our stores. Remember last summer when the girls softball tourney was in town? You couldn't go anywhere without seeing them spending money. This is one residual benefit of building such a facility.

The other benefit is that our own kids will finally have adequate facilities at their disposal. Those that make the argument that such facilities already exist clearly haven't tried to schedule a field or gym in Lawrence. With this project, perhaps our families won't take their kids (and their money) to Topeka and Olathe to play.

My son is old enough that he will not directly benefit from this project before its completion. I'm thinking big picture for Lawrence/Douglas County and not about the $5-10/year it may cost me. We need the study, but, bottom line: This is good for Lawrence/Douglas County.

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