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Youth Baseball Complex set to host over 20 travel ball tournaments in 2021

Published: Jan. 22, 2021 at 5:40 PM CST
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - With construction projects expected to take place until the summer at the Johnny Downs Sports Complex, Cam Hallman, the Superintendent of Parks and recreation for Alexandria says that most of the travel ball tournaments will be held at the Youth Baseball Complex on Masonic Dr.

“For the Youth Complex alone, we have anywhere between 20 and 24 tournaments lined up this year,” said Hallman

Hallman added that Alexandria will be able to host more tournaments once the Johnny Downs Rejuvenation Project is complete. The Alexandria City Council has already passed two parts of the project which includes renovations to the soccer fields and the softball and baseball practice fields.

Currently, the City of Alexandria is working on the $159,000 project to repair the fencing on the practice fields and to add a cement walkway. The next step will be for the playing fields to be redone.

On Tuesday, Jan. 26, the city council will vote to either accept or decline the bid which would start construction on the playing fields at Johnny Downs.

“The process is that we are going to have to get the fencing taken care of, the turf on the fields, the LED lighting, concessions, the press boxes and all of the other components we are going to need to be able to play a game, ” said Hallman.

The $7 million project to fix up the fields would have to be completed in time to host the Dixie League World Series that is scheduled for July.

Keith “Skip” Fox, the president of the Dixie Softball Program in Alexandria said that if the fields aren’t done in time, it would affect their future bids for tournaments.

“We’ve already been awarded four more world series for 2022. However, if this project falls through or doesn’t go off in a way in which we told the national organization that it was going to, they can take those world series away from us,” Fox said.

The City of Alexandria is hoping the project will be done in the next five months not only for the opportunity it provides for the youth but the economic value it has for the city. The world series could bring up to $12 million in tax revenue.

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