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Harvest Youth Board grants Smith River Sports Complex $2,500

August 19, 2016

The Smith River Sports Complex (SRSC) plans to broaden the age appeal of the children’s playground by enhancing it with a $2,500 grant from the Harvest Youth Board.

The current children’s playground at the SRSC is designed for a target age range of 4-to-7 years, according to the project application. This expansion will extend the range from 2-to-12 years.

“The sports complex is in the midst of adding more leisure activities for the public’s benefit,” said Cameron Brummitt, vice chairman of the Harvest Youth Board. “As a board, we felt compelled to be a part of their initiative.”

Harvest Youth Board Member Karli Foster said as a board, “We realize the impact the sports complex has on our youth. We saw this opportunity as an enhancement to not only the playground, but to the community as a whole.”

Once the age appeal has been broadened, the playground will attract more children and young families, increase usage, and further promote outdoor activity and community wellness, according to the project application.

Billy Russo, director of operations at the sports complex, said the SRSC sets itself apart because of the diverse amenities offered at the facility.

“Our state-of-the-art playground has always been a huge part of that,” Russo said. “Now, with the addition of the new equipment, that area is further enhanced and visitors will have one more amenity to enjoy.”

SRSC Director of Development Lloyd Barber said she hopes this addition will result in more frequent rentals of the adjacent picnic shelter for family gatherings and birthday parties, and also increase vending sales along with concessions.

“We are very appreciative of the grant from the Harvest Youth Board to enhance the playground at the Smith River Sports Complex,” Barber said. “With this grant, we will be able to add new equipment to the playground, which will broaden the appeal to our area's youth, and thus, attract more people to the complex daily and encourage greater outdoor activity. The focus of the Harvest Youth Board is to support the youth in our community, so the playground, which is free and open to the public, is a perfect fit.”

The Harvest Youth Board was created in June 2015 to develop projects and initiatives important to young people in Martinsville and Henry County, and to advise the Harvest Foundation Board of Directors on issues relating to youth. The board is supported by the Harvest Foundation and the Kiwanis Club of Martinsville. 

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