Paragould ballparks practice a ‘soft opening’

Plan For Parks & Recreation To Open

PARAGOULD, Ark. (KAIT) - As we figure our way through the coronavirus pandemic, many sports complexes have opened for practices and another one has joined the team.

Paragould’s baseball and softball complexes will open for practices as soon as the fields dry out.

Parks director Pat Austin says this play change will be termed as a soft opening. Only travel teams can secure the fields for practice.

“We’re going to be very careful because we don’t want the contamination to come back, number spike up where we’re shut down,” she says.

Austin mentioned the fences will be sprayed with disinfectants between practices.

The park’s mandatory rules include:

  • No one in dugouts
  • Players and coaches only on the field
  • Parents in cars, no siblings out playing
  • No sharing equipment

Austin says the teams must adhere to the rules.

“We will stick to our guns. If we go out there and we find someone not abiding by our rules that we have in place, then we will ask your team to go and we will ask you not to come back to our facilities,” she says.

She says monitoring the rules and enforcing them will be up to those using the facilities, too.

“The coaches will have to take some responsibilities, the folks who rent these fields from us,” she says. “Of course, we will be there present to make sure but they’re going to have to take responsibility, too.”

The teams who use the fields must provide contact phone numbers and alert the Parks and Recreation Department if a player contracts the coronavirus.

To sign up for your travel team, call the department at 870-239-7530.

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