Last summer the work began to bring two new professional sized soccer fields to Strathmore. The fields, located behind Walmart just east of the Ranch Estates, were almost ready to open when disaster struck.
“We were just in the works of getting the fence put around and some nice person decided to pull donuts in the field, tear up the sod and put nice tracks in,” said Mark Shorhen, president of Strathmore Minor Soccer Association.
“We haven’t got the estimate yet if they’ve done damage to the irrigation system. We could possibly be looking at a $20,000 or $30,000 repair bill for a field we still haven’t gotten to use yet, it’s kind of frustrating.”
The incident took place either late June 24, or early June 25. The fence had been up three quarters of the way down the field, said Shorhen. It was just a small area of access, which is where the suspects entered the field.
Strathmore Minor Soccer had been hoping to have their June 28 wind-up party at the field, which they were unable to do. Minor Soccer is now working on getting an assessment on what sort of repairs they are looking at.
“(It’s) very frustrating that someone would be so irresponsible that they would just perform damage to a newly developed soccer field,” said Dennis Klem, vice-president of the association.
Shorhen said the day after finding out about the vandalism at the new fields he went to the Parkwood field, where more damage had been done. While it wasn’t donuts all over the field, there was still enough damage to tear up some of the field.
Shorhen is convinced there must be someone who knows something about what happened. Because of the vandalism, the opening of the field has been pushed back until possibly this fall.
“We’re still hoping to maybe have kind of an opening with the school kids on it maybe this fall when they just get back to school,” said Shorhen.
“We’ll have just (have)… a meet and greet on the field with all of the different elementary kids. Again everything sort of depends on the damage to the field.”
The field is now blocked off with cement barriers so no one else will be able to get their vehicle onto it.
Anyone with any information about the vandalism at the soccer field can contact Chris Kelly or Const. Daly with the Strathmore RCMP at 403-934-3968.