Location: Penn-Wright Stadium, 1500 Dans Rd., Greensboro, NC 27401
Community Impact: The tag line in Austin Homan’s email signature reads “Better Lives, Better Community – Come Join Us.” Those words nicely sum up the reasons behind Project EverGreen’s “Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.”™ initiative that renovates and revitalizes athletic and recreational green spaces across the country.
Homan is the athletics superintendent for the City of Greensboro’s Parks and Recreation Department and was the point man for the recently completed “Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.” renovation project of the playing surface at Penn-Wright Stadium in Greensboro, N.C.
The stadium is home to the city’s youth baseball program and weekend tournaments from April to October, and has a long history within Greensboro’s baseball program. With hundreds of players legging out doubles, chasing down fly balls and fielding grounders nearly every day, the stadium’s diamond gets a workout and it needed a call to the bullpen.
“Every city has to manage its financial resources closely and the funds are not always available for ongoing maintenance and improvements to keep up with the wear and tear Penn-Wright’s field receives,” says Homan, who was a college baseball player at East Carolina University.
Project EverGreen volunteers excavated, graded and replaced the infield surface with a new clay mixture and installed new sod that eliminated the infield lip which caused bad hops and put players at risk of injury.
Volunteers also applied weed control and fertilization treatments to the outfield turf and installed new plant material and trees around the stadium to add aesthetic value.
What was the project’s impact? Homan says the renovated field allows the department to continue with its mission to provide Greensboro’s youth with an outlet to not only learn a sport and be active, but gain valuable lessons in sportsmanship, responsibility and teamwork.
“Organized sports create opportunities for kids to be part of something, be active and lead a healthier lifestyle and having safe, well-maintained facilities that help us do that are vital,” says Homan. “The work Project EverGreen’s volunteers did will allow us to continue to expand our youth baseball programs and welcome even more kids to the program.”
Weed control and fertilization
Reseeding and application of soil top dressing
Installation of new plant material and trees
Infield excavating, grading and replacing infield surfaces with a new clay mixture
Brush removal and tree trimming
Removal of debris and general cleanup
Completion Date: April 2016
Estimated Project Value: $10,000
Estimated Value of Volunteer Time: $3,700