TRC fields undergo facelifts
Although the Tonganoxie Recreation Commission baseball and softball fields probably won't have any more games until next spring, spectators during the season were treated to some cosmetic changes.
In the spring, the commission made considerable improvements to the TRC fields. Before the high school baseball and softball seasons, red shale was put down on the infields. Red shale is designed to absorb more water than other substances. The product, purchased from a company in Viola, south of Wichita, cost roughly $7,000 for the material and shipping.
The infields, though, aren't the only areas sporting an improved color scheme. Green wind screening also was installed on three fields, giving the fences a more aesthetically pleasing appearance than the previous chain-link fences. The fencing, which cost $5,500, is attached to the existing chain-link and covers all of the fences at the fields except for the area from first base and third base inward.
Ben Cramer, assistant TRC director, said the only complaint he's heard about the fencing is that it's hard to view players on neighboring fields at the same time.
"We really haven't had too much as far as that goes," Ben said about the criticism. "Just a little on the visual."
Other improvements were also made to the outfield "walls" on TRC 1 and 2. Business advertisement billboards grace the outfields at both fields. Existing boards from last year were replaced, and new boards also were added. The billboard addition began last year, and space is still available on the walls. Advertisement is $200 per year with a four-year contract.
The last renovation came with a new TRC 2 scoreboard. Yellow fence capping was also purchased in the spring for three of the fields, and will be installed to cover the fencetops. It cost $1,350 and will be put over the outfield fence and around much of the foul lines before the high school baseball and softball seasons open next year.
Once that finishing touch is applied to each field, Cramer said the fields would be set.
"When we get it all done, it's going to be one of the nicer facilities around, I suppose," Cramer said. "It will rival anything around this area, at least that I've seen, especially for a town this size."