First adaptive ball field set to open in northwest Alabama

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MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. – Eight years of planning has led to a big unveiling planned for next week in the Shoals. Kids of all ages and abilities will be able to participate in their favorite summer-time sports.

The finishing touches are happening on the first adaptive playing field in northwest Alabama. It will give children with disabilities the opportunity to participate like never before.

“It’s going to be exciting to see those kids out here playing,” explained Muscle Shoals Parks and Recreation Director Rusty Wheeles.

The city of Muscle Shoals has been spearheading efforts to build an adaptive ball field for years. A specialized rubber playing surface opens up new possibilities.

“There is nothing like this in this area, and this will draw kids from miles away and just give them an opportunity to play, compete, and have a good time,” said Wheeles.

According to Wheeles, children with varying levels of need will be able to participate with the help of volunteers. Covered stands and dugouts will keep kids cool during the hottest of days. State grants and donations from the community made it happen.

“It’s not only the city of Muscle Shoals, this is the Quad-Cities,” Wheeles said. “Sheffield, Tuscumbia, Florence, this is going to impact everyone in this area.”

The league here in Muscle Shoals still needs volunteers to assist in making dreams become reality. You can contact the Parks and Recreation Department to help out.

A special ceremony to open up the new adaptive ball field at Gattman Park is planned for September 10 at 5:30 p.m. and will be followed by two ball games.

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