Lacrosse enthusiast invents field striping system
By night, William "Dusty" Wethington is the manager of the Falling Springs Park and Recreation Center. By day, he's a lacrosse coach - and the inventor of a device designed to make striping lacrosse, soccer, field hockey and football fields quicker and more precise. His sideline, so to speak, began four years ago, when the middle school club lacrosse teams he coached moved their games to the grass field at Woodford County Middle School. He and three other volunteers had to stripe the field. "I had to mark the football field with the lacrosse markings, and it was cold that day and windy, and there were four of us out there marking, and it took us about three-and-a-half hours to measure it and to paint it. And I thought . have pre-measured lines and pre-marked lines, so basically all I have to do is just roll out these lines and start marking." Two iterations of his 'Easy Crease" invention later (it's now called EC Lines), a team of three can line the field with precision in an hour and 15 minutes, Wethington said. The kits come with marked metal pegs and pre-measured plastic-coated steel lines he said will not knot up. After the field is striped, the pegs and lines are pulled up. Other systems, Wethington said, use bigger, hard plastic pegs that remain in the ground and are subject to rising up when fields are wet and becoming a trip hazard. A kit for the Woodford County Middle School football field uses 1,100 feet of the lines, he said. Customers, which include Asbury University, the University of the Cumberlands and one overseas client, provide their own cart and attached spray paint can, and paint just outside the lines. E.C. Lines, with full-field kits costing $300, are available in more than a dozen stores, including Woodford Sports and Custom Apparel at 228 Yellow Jacket Drive. Wethington said the kits are guaranteed for life, with only one of his more than 1,000 customers reporting a problem. He puts them together at his Woodford County Farm using a long table and fencing his wife calls "a fence to nowhere." It's a labor of love for Wethington, who's president of the Woodford County Lacrosse Association, coach of the middle school boys' and girls' club teams and boys' youth program. He grew up in Lexington, but with no high school lacrosse teams then, played for the University of Kentucky's club team when he was a junior at Bryan Station High School. If he sells enough kits, he might be able to quit his night-time job. Until then, he'll continue to spend what few off hours he has bent over his fence to nowhere. "Slowly but surely - baby steps - getting it out there to the world," Wethington said.