SPORTS GALORE: Facilities offer a sense of pride

By Bruce Bentley • Last Updated 10:31 am on Friday, September 14, 2012

Sports Galore | Bruce Bentley

Belding and Greenville high schools have put themselves on the map with their brand new athletic facilities.

Regardless, of how we feel about the cost or need, these two schools have some of the best athletic facilities around. It’s not just one field that sets them apart, but the combination of all.

Now, the two flashiest venues are the ones just recently opened. Those would be Legacy Field in Greenville and Redskin Arena in Belding.

Opening to more than 5,000 people, Legacy Field showcased itself in a successful manner to both Greenville and Belding fans. Every aspect of the stadium is great from the synthetic field turf to the locker rooms.

Legacy Field is easily one of the best in the state.

Just the other night I caught the first competition (volleyball) at Redskin Arena.

Redskin Arena is one of the nicest in the state, especially for a school the size of Belding (669 students). I’m not sure I’ve been to a better Class B arena.

The new arena has an indoor track around the top of the gym and rounded seating along one of the baselines. I love the windows along a good portion of the venue that allows for outside light to come in.

Students, staff and community members all have something to be proud of.

Remember when a gym was just a couple of basketball courts with bleachers. I remember when the football field had actual grass with a crown across the middle that made you wonder if you would be able to see the other side.

I went to Livonia Churchill (by the way, rated No. 5 in the Division 1 AP football poll) in the early ’90s and there was nothing special about any of our athletic facilities.

Soon after I was gone, the building boom took place. A new gym was built. The football field was redone with field turf. Even our baseball and softball fields got makeovers.

When I’m back home, I still occasionally drive by to take a look and envy what I didn’t get the chance to play on or in.

It seems like many schools are building new athletic facilities across the state. That is not the case. Realize you are lucky to have such nice facilities.

There have been a couple of recent incidents (not delving into them), which are the complete opposite of pride. Random acts of vandalism are foolish and it takes away from what others are trying to accomplish.

Enjoy what you have. Be proud of what you have. Most importantly, take care of what you have.

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