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Changes mulled for Oak Lawn’s Centennial Park

Kyle Ruchalfield maintenance manager secures an outfield sign Centennial Park Tuesday. A community meeting about proposed changes park is set

Kyle Ruchala, field maintenance manager, secures an outfield sign at Centennial Park on Tuesday. A community meeting about proposed changes to the park is set for 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at Stony Creek. | Steve Metsch/Sun-Times Media

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Updated: July 19, 2014 6:34AM



Four adjacent ballfields at Centennial Park in Oak Lawn would be reconfigured, with the diamonds moved and flipped to face the opposite way than they do now, if the Oak Lawn Park District gets a state grant it is pursuing, parks Supt. Joel Craig said Tuesday.

The fields are laid out in four corners of an area, with the diamonds and home plates on the outside, leaving outfield spots in the unfenced fields to overlap each other.

“Sometimes, it interferes with playing on the other fields. We’d like to have the diamonds switched so players are hitting the ball away from each other,” Craig said. “It would also be nice to have a central area with some bathrooms, instead of porta-potties, and maybe a concession stand.”

Proposed changes at the park, 9401 S. Nashville Ave., are to be discussed at a public meeting at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the clubhouse of Stony Creek Golf Course, 5880 W. 103rd St. Park district officials are holding the meeting because they want ideas from the public, Craig said.

Among those being considered are improvements to volleyball courts, exercise stations, regrading and crowning the soccer field, and replacing all of the walking paths, Craig said.

The park district is putting together a grant request to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, said Craig, who thinks $1.8 million to $2 million should cover the expenses.

For more information about the meeting, call (708) 857-2225.



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