Bridgeport softball field upgraded

BRIDGEPORT — Irene Ehni Memorial Field received a pair of upgrades just in time for the Bridgeport softball team’s season-opener on March 28 against Toronto.

A concession stand-restroom facility has been constructed down the leftfield line at a cost of about $60,000. The Pease Township Parks District was responsible for $24,000 of the funding and presented a $14,000 check to Bridgeport Exempted Village School District Superintendent Zac Shutler during Wednesday night’s monthly board of education meeting to complete its donation.

“We are here to present this check to the board that will fulfill our pledge of $24,000,” Pease Township Parks District Treasurer Bob Weaver said.

Shutler thanked Weaver and his Parks District commissioners for their generosity.

“This is the epitome of a community project,” Shutler said, noting that the Bridgeport Rotary Club also helped with the project. “It’s been a few years in the making, but as a district we are honored and appreciative of the support. It’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.”

In addition to the concession stand and restrooms, there will also be a kitchen area with a sink.

Irene Ehni Field was constructed adjacent to the school campus. It was dedicated in 2011. A year later, the Rotary Club started building a huge picnic shelter in the same area.

“It enhances the complex and is what the Parks District wanted,” Shutler said. “We really needed a concession stand and restrooms, so it all worked out for the better.”

He said the sight line for parents working the concession stand during games is perfect.

“They won’t miss anything,” he said.

In November, the board of education unanimously approved a measure allowing Treasurer Dana Garrison to advertise for bids for the project. A local construction firm, K&K Home Builders, accepted the job and has been working feverishly to complete it before the season begins.

“The goal is for it to be finished by the beginning of April for the beginning of the softball season,” Shutler said.

In a separate matter, a permanent fence has been installed in rightfield, replacing the snow fence that had been there in previous seasons.