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Jeremy Gaston | Sports Editor

OVERBROOK—The City of Overbrook and Overbrook PRIDE, Inc., continued development of the recreation facilities at Jones Park with the dedication of a new soccer field.

“Overbrook PRIDE has been working with the City of Overbrook as well as many other partners who have started the process of improving the city park,” said PRIDE Chairman Jon Brady.

PRIDE was awarded a matching grant from the Jones Trust to build new sports facilities. Much of the monetary donations for the project came from a large donation from PepsiCo Frito-Lay in Topeka.

“Frito-Lay contributed $20,000 to the project,” Brady said. “To complete the project an additional $11,067 was needed. Overbrook PRIDE provided the additional funding through the Jones Trust, fund raising and private donations.”

The mid-sized field may be played long ways as a single 80-yard field, or divided into two smaller fields for younger age divisions. The field sits adjacent to the new baseball field, which opened this year, and the youth fishing lake, which opened last summer.

“In our planning process with K-State University, it was emphasized that soccer needed to be a major component of the park,” Brady said.

The addition opens soccer to both fall and spring seasons, and creates more opportunity to use the ball fields for their intended purpose.

“Prior to the new field, soccer was played on the baseball and softball fields which only allowed soccer to be a fall sport,” Brady said. “It also limited the softball program by not allowing fall softball.”

The project began in 2008 when Kristie Pryor, a representative of Frito-Lay, indicated the possibility of funding for a project. Brady met with Pryor and Scott Denny of Frito-Lay to discuss the project. A soccer field project was submitted and approved by Frito-Lay.

In addition to the $31,067 required for the project, additional volunteer work was provided by Ben Brady, Bob Brady, Jim Foster, Mark Criger, G&G Excavating and Musick Excavating; equipment was provided by Doug Cloud, Bill Baldwin, the City of Overbrook and Martin Tractor.

The field hosted several games before and after the dedication Saturday, and will host games between Santa Fe Trail Soccer Team (Overbrook, Carbondale, Scranton), Lyndon and Osage City teams through the fall.
“This project has had a major impact on the community,” Brady said.