By Errol Castens
OXFORD – Six retractable batting cages, artificial turf and an observation deck are among the features that excite Oxonians about FNC Park’s new indoor practice facility.
Formally named the Oxford Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Indoor Practice Facility, the building was dedicated Friday afternoon by city, county and university officials.
FNC Park Director Brad Freeman said idea the started as a casual conversation with orthopedist Kurre Luber and Oxford Park Commission Executive Director Rob Boyd.
“We’re very excited about our new facility here,” he said.
Freeman thanked his staff, who shared much of his work as general contractor for the project, along with their regular duties.
“In fact, when we came in this morning, we had 11 tarps on the fields, but with 50 miles-an-hour winds and four inches of rain, those tarps were in left field, so they’ve been here since 6 a.m. getting the fields ready so we can play this weekend,” he said. “With 126 teams in town this weekend, it’s a real big weekend for us as well as the town.”
Mayor Pat Patterson recalled when Oxford had one baseball field serving kids from ages 7 to 15.
“Isn’t this remarkable?” he said. “It’s kind of amazing to see how far this community has come.”
Board of Supervisors President said the partnership between the city, county and Oxford Orthopaedics was remarkable.
“There’s not many places throughout the state where two local governments and a private business can come together to build a facility like this,” he said. “I feel like we’re blessed as a community that we can work together and make this happen.”
Dr. Daniel Boyd is a partner in Oxford Orthopaedics with Dr. Kurre Luber and Dr. Cooper Terry.
“It’s been our pleasure to be a part of something we think will benefit the Oxford-Lafayette community,” he said. “This is not only an arena for kids to become better athletes, better teammates and hopefully better citizens through sports, but it’s also a facility for us to use to educate youngsters on proper training, proper techniques and injury prevention.”