FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 28, 2008
Contact: K.E. Schwab
SRU breaks ground for $1.3 million intramural field upgrade
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University broke ground at noon today for a $1.3 million development of 12 acres of University land to be used for intramural sports activities. The public groundbreaking marks construction of the intramural sports complex on the fields located at the corner of Harmony and Branchton roads.
Those attending were told that Slippery Rock University leads the entire Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education in number of students - both men and women - taking part in intramural sports.
"We see more than 4,500 students participate in intramurals each year," said Greg Sferra, director of campus recreation and project leader. "We average 65 flag football teams, 30-35 soccer teams and the same number of Ultimate Frisbee teams. In addition there are usually 50 to 80 softball teams."
"For the past 30 to 35 years, these were just basically open fields the University mowed and then used for intramural sports games. Now, they are being converted into regulation recreation sports fields for students use," said Greg Sferra, director of campus recreation and project leader. He said that while some intramural activities were curtained this year due to the construction, "This is a temporary inconvenience for a permanent improvement."
Today's groundbreaking included remarks from Robert Smith, SRU president, who expanded the original concept for the intramural field complex. Also speaking were Constance Foley, vice president of student life; Wes and Ann Bonadio, campus recreation student interns; Robert Rhoads, coordinator of intramural sports; and Sferra. All joined in lifting ceremonial shovels of dirt to mark the opening of construction.
The project, paid for by campus recreation, includes creation of four, multi-purpose recreation sports fields that will primarily be used for flag football, soccer and Ultimate Frisbee. There will also be two softball fields. Four of the six fields - and possibly all six - will have lighting for evening and night games.
Plans also call for construction of a facility for concessions, storage and restrooms.
The complex will also include the new walkway path being constructed along the eastern edge of the fields. The walk/jog path is being paid for through a state grant.
Construction is expected to be completed by December, with fencing installed next spring as grass grows on the fields making them ready for fall semester intramural sports, Sferra said.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.