• John McGary, Woodford Sun Staff

Court moves forward on softball facility

Woodford Fiscal Court voted unanimously Tuesday to give conditional approval to a local non-profit that plans to build a climate-controlled baseball/softball practice facility next to Field 9 at the Woodford County Park.

Dr. Les Anderson of the Woodford Youth Softball Foundation passed out pictures of what the 5,400 square foot facility would look like and reiterated that his group would pay for the building. It would cost an estimated $137,000, which could be reduced by in-kind donations, and feature batting cages, male and female restrooms and a concession stand. Anderson said the building would be paid for with annual membership fees.

“I hope we’ve provided ample evidence to everyone that the building we plan to put up will represent the county in a positive fashion … continuing the opportunities for our kids and to continue to build up our baseball and softball programs,” Anderson said. Magistrate Mary Ann Gill (Dist. 7) asked if there would be enough parking there. Anderson said when games aren’t going on at the park, only 10 or 11 people would likely be in the facility, and that existing parking was sufficient.

County Attorney Alan George asked whether the group had surveyed the property yet. A motion by Magistrate Duncan Gardiner (Dist. 6) to begin the process states that the group will submit a proposed $1-a-year lease agreement and survey before the court votes on a final deal.

New high school

In response to a question from Magistrate Gerald Dotson (Dist. 5), Woodford Economic Development Authority (EDA) Chair John Soper called the proposed new high school “very critical” to the economy. (See high school story on front page 1.) Soper said Woodford’s well-respected school system played a significant role in recruiting the county’s three newest industries.

“The investment the community makes in the high school, the investment the community makes in other projects – they all look at that when they’re deciding where to go and where to stay,” Soper said.

Soper said he hopes if a new high school is built, the EDA can play a role in establishing a technical center and vocational school in the Frankfort Street building, which opened in 1964.

Soper also said the 2nd annual Industry Day for high school students will take place Tuesday, March 20 and feature tours of Yokohama, NSG Pilkington, Ruggles Sign, Ledvance (formerly Osram Sylvania) and Ruggles Sign. More Than A Bakery will provide lunch.

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