AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – Using a 90-acre land donation from Rockrose Development, Kids, Incorporated announced that it will construct a multi-sport athletic complex south of Loop 335 between I-27 and Coulter Street.
“Kids, Inc. has been the premier sports organization in our community for more than 75 years,” said Rockrose Development Vice President Matt Griffith, “We are pleased to provide this land and we are very excited about the vision Jimmy Lackey and his team have planned for this property.”
According to officials from Kids, Inc., “Phase One” of the new project will consist of a $30 million outdoor complex with around 60 acres of lighted synthetic turf sports fields.
“We are so grateful to Matt and the team at Rockrose Development for working with us to make this vision a reality,” said Kids, Inc. President & CEO Jimmy Lackey. “This generous donation is not possible without the vision and commitment of Suzanne Attebury Boyce. Suzanne and her family have a long history of providing generous land donations for schools and churches over the years and she is very excited about this partnership with Kids, Inc. The gift of this property provides us an opportunity to approach this as a privately funded venture. We invite all who understand the real need for quality youth sports facilities to join in and help us bring this state-of-the-art sports complex to the Texas Panhandle.”
The campaign committee, according to the organization, includes those representing Kids, Inc. youth baseball, softball, soccer, adult senior softball, Amarillo College athletics, West Texas A&M University athletics, and several parents with children that participate in youth sports. Honorary co-chairs include Richard Ware and Terry Caviness; campaign co-chairs are Kids, Inc. Board of Directors member Lizzie Williams, and Jimmy Lackey.
“We all understand the need for this project,” said Chairman of the Board for Amarillo National Bank Richard Ware, “We want to encourage the entire community to get behind this project. It will serve every child in town who wants to participate in youth sports.”
“I`m so excited to co-chair this committee with Jimmy,” said Lizzie Williams. “This has been an issue in our community for many years. Thanks to the generous land donation, we have a chance to control the project as a private endeavor without having to ask the community to support such a project through a tax increase. We believe the support is out there for this development. We are ready to go to work.”
According to the organization, Amarillo College is expected to benefit from the complex as well. A baseball field included in the complex is expected to allow the revived Badger Baseball program to have a permanent practice field. The college has also been invited to use the outdoor complex for intramural programs.
“We are thrilled to be included in this much-needed facility,” said Director of Intercollegiate Athletics for Amarillo College Mark White, “This wonderful facility gives us a first-class place to practice daily. Having this turf field for practice is also a great recruiting tool.”
Once funding has been secured to complete the outdoor complex, the committee said it will shift gears to focus on “Phase 2”, which will consist of an indoor facility. Kids, Inc. and officials from West Texas A&M University Athletics are currently designing an indoor facility to include an indoor track, as well as basketball and volleyball courts.
“We are excited to work with Kids, Inc. to bring a state-of-the-art indoor complex to the Amarillo/Canyon region,” said Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at West Texas A&M University Michael McBroom, “We will be able to host first-class NCAA track meets in such a facility that will bring a new entertainment venue to the public, as well as bring new tax dollars to the region.”
“The availability of additional basketball and volleyball courts will give us the chance to not only use it for our programs,” added Lackey, “but the facility will provide additional court rentals for local club teams, while adding new court inventory space for existing youth basketball and volleyball tournaments.”
“We also have a tremendous partnership with the Alex O`Brien tennis foundation,” Lackey continued, “The indoor facility will provide tennis and pickleball enthusiasts another place to practice their skills in an indoor setting.”