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April 4, 2020

3/25/2020 1:56:00 PM
NV Parks planning late start for youth leagues
The start of spring and summer youth sports leagues is being delayed at the North Vernon City Park by the coronavirus crisis, but Chad Speer is hopeful that modified seasons can still be played in soccer, baseball and softball.

"We have tentative plans with adjusted schedules," said Speer, director of the North Vernon Parks and Recreation Department. "Obviously these will all depend on guidelines we get from the CDC (U.S. Center for Disease Control)."

Youth baseball and softball registration, originally scheduled to end March 31, is being extended to an unspecified date as yet to be set.

Youth soccer league practice actually started earlier this month but was shut off last week when Mayor Mike Ochs suspended all city-sponsored athletic and sports activities at the city park.

If the parks department receives the "all clear" in early May, youth soccer teams will resume practice then.
"We would hope to start the youth soccer season the day after Memorial Day and continue until July 4 when we would end the season with a tournament," Speer said.

Youth baseball and softball teams will begin practice the week of July 6 if the tentative schedule can be enacted. Those seasons would start Aug. 1 and continue to Sept. 7, according to the parks director.

"After baseball and softball are over, we'll go into the fall soccer season which will go until Oct. 31," Speer said.

"I know these schedules are crunched a bit, but that's the plan," he continued. "We don't want to cancel any of the leagues. We want to give the kids a sports season this year."

Pool to open in May?

The new pool at the city park is still scheduled to open for the very first time on Saturday, May 23, and continue until early August.

"We were getting ready to hire 15 lifeguards" when the mayor issued the emergency order, Speer said. "Four or five of those lifeguards are already certified and the rest were getting ready to get certified or take classes for the certification. Right now, those certification classes are on hold so we'll have to make adjustments if we get the go-ahead to open the pool in May."

Other updates

The playgrounds at both the City Park and the new Tripton Park are closed, but the walkway around the city park and trail on the north side of FDR Drive remain open as do the walking trails at Tripton Park. "Please maintain social distancing in all cases," Speer advises.

The Jennings County Farmers' Market and radio-controlled car racing at the city park have been suspended.

"The family restrooms are open at both parks," Speer said.

"We are still hoping to have the Tripton Park grand opening celebration on Saturday, June 6," he added. "A lot depends on how everything develops in the next few weeks."

For more information, contact the parks department office at 812-346-9371 or visit .nvpr.org.

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