The non-profit recreation program Kick It Forward is working with the City of Storm Lake on the project. Kick It Forward has been raising the funds necessary to build the pitch - approximately $100,000 - and is about 90 percent of the way toward that goal..
Program leaders announced this week that construction will move forward, scheduled to begin during the week of August 23. The soccer pitch will be located on the former tennis court area of Chautauqua Park and will include lighting and benches. The futsal-style fields were designed by Iowa company Musco Lighting to provide fun, safety-first outdoor recreation.
A kickoff event to dedicate the new Storm Lake pitch is being planned tentatively for September 10, when construction is expected to be complete. More details will be announced soon.
“Mini-pitches strengthen communities,” according to the project planners. “The system is ideal for “transforming underutilized areas into places where children and families can come together in the spirit of teamwork, empowerment and physical activity. They’re a great way to make new friends. Storm Lake is a soccer-loving community, and thousands of kids will now have free access to a safe and accessible playing environment,” they said.
The Storm Lake project will be only the second mini-pitch in northwest Iowa, after a similar project in Sioux City’s Leif Erickson Park.
“I’m anticipating that people of all ages are going to be using the pitch all the time,” Community Education Director Joe Kucera said.
“We’ve always had kids playing soccer on the courts at Chautauqua. Adding a mini-pitch gives the youth a permanent structure and will only add to their experience,” he added. “We have a large soccer-loving community and continue seeing kids play the game. This addition will only benefit them and our community by giving everybody a safe and accessible place to play the game they love.”
Kick It Forward was founded by a group of former college soccer athletes who wanted to share their passion for the game with the next generation. To date, 14 mini-pitches have been built around the state., with more in the planning stage.
- For more information, or to donate toward completing the fund drive, see kifsoccer.org/storm-lake/