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COMMUNITY SPORTS

Rocklin cuts ribbon on new soccer fields

Kathy Lund Park
By: Jim Linsdau of The Placer Herald
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Thanks to a great deal of cooperation and effort, the city of Rocklin now has two, new soccer fields planted with Celebration Bermuda grass like that in place at Margaret Azevedo Park, installed two years ago.

Dignitaries from Rocklin, the Rocklin Chamber of Commerce, Rocklin Youth Soccer Club and Placer Valley Tourism gathered for a ribbon cutting at Kathy Lund Park off of West Oaks Boulevard in Rocklin Friday.

“It benefits the city by using less water,” said RYSC Competitive Coordinator and spokesman Stephen Makis, “and most soccer players would rather play on grass.”

The Celebration Bermuda grass is hardy and withstands heat better than most grasses. It also grows rapidly and holds up well to the rigors of soccer.

Placer Valley Tourism provided the $82,000 needed to replant the two pitches, which included the softball facility’s outfield. The organization also provided financial assistance for the renovations at Rocklin’s Whitney Park and McBean Park in Lincoln.

PVT CEO David Attaway said his organization works with the hotels in the area, which provide the monies to fund these projects.

“Sports tourism is our primary strategy for helping them fill their weekends. And about 90-95 percent of the rooms that we generate are through sports tourism,” said Attaway. “It does two big things for us as a great business model. One, we do what we do. But two, it services the community. These parks are here every day.”

Kim Summers, PVT’s director of marketing, said the projects funded by Placer Valley Tourism benefit South Placer communities in a number of ways. Not only do they boost the local economy, but the youth of Rocklin, Roseville and Lincoln benefit too.

“As we’ve grown we have some more money and we’re able to help with these facilities. Because we know budgets are tighter than ever for cities, we’re able to come in and bridge that gap and work with organizations,” Summers said. “And to have a class organization like Rocklin Youth Soccer, it speaks volumes to them … they’re already talking about expanding tournaments and bringing more people to the area.”

RYSC President Brad Paduveris did the honors of cutting the ribbon to open the two fields. Competitive coordinator Ross Buchholtz was also present, along with Makis.

“A lot of hard work from a bunch of individual people, people like Steve (Makis),” said Buchholtz. “When everyone said ‘Go,’ it just happened. I mean it was flawless and it really, really worked well.”