De­catur Dol­lar Gen­eral gives do­na­tion to the new Vet­er­ans Park soc­cer com­plex

Westside Eagle-Observer - - FRONT PAGE - By Mike Eck­els meck­els@nwadg.com

DE­CATUR — The new Vet­er­ans Park Soc­cer Com­plex in De­catur is one step closer to com­ple­tion, thanks to a do­na­tion from one of the town’s new­est busi­nesses, Dol­lar Gen­eral.

Last June, the city of De­catur, with the help of grants and bud­geted park de­part­ment funds, built a reg­u­la­tion-size soc­cer com­plex on the west side of Vet­er­ans Park be­tween Ed­mis­ton Park ball field and Arkansas High­way 102.

The com­plex was con­structed for the De­catur Youth Soc­cer pro­gram to give De­catur youth a place to host games, tour­na­ments and scrim­mages with­out hav­ing to travel to ei­ther Gen­try or Siloam Springs to be part of a team. There are cur­rently 90 reg­is­tered mem­bers en­rolled in the De­catur Youth Soc­cer pro­gram.

Since the field was com­pleted in Sept. of 2016, the city was look­ing for do­na­tions to pur­chase new goals and a fence (to keep soc­cer balls from hit­ting cars along High­way 102). The cost of the goals is $2,450, with the fence cost at $7,600. The to­tal cost to com­plet­ing the project will be $10,050.

“Re­cently, Dol­lar Gen­eral ap­proached me and asked what

projects in town they could par­tic­i­pate with,” said Bob Tharp, De­catur’s mayor. “The soc­cer field was one I felt would im­pact those 90 play­ers and their fam­i­lies quickly.”

On July 19, Tharp was con­tacted by Matt Cooper, Dol­lar Gen­eral re­gional man­ager, in­form­ing the city that the Dol­lar Gen­eral Cor­po­ra­tion was go­ing to do­nate $1,000 to­wards the soc­cer field equip­ment. Two days later, on July 21, Tharp, along with James Bos­ton, di­rec­tor of public works, met with Cooper and Scott Fra­zier, De­catur store man­ager, to ac­cept the do­na­tion at the store.

“We had this chance to part­ner with De­catur on some­thing that seemed re­ally cool for the soc­cer pro­gram and to see what we can do as a district to make this pos­si­ble,” said Cooper. “We are ex­ited about it and ex­cited to see where the city goes with it.”

The city con­tin­ues to ac­cept do­na­tions to­ward the project and any­one wish­ing to do­nate may con­tact the city clerks’ of­fice at 479-752-3912.

“I want to thank Matt, Scott and Dol­lar Gen­eral for their sup­port with this awe­some gift,” Tharp said. “Our com­mu­nity will ap­pre­ci­ate this for years to come.”

Photo by Mike Eck­els

Mayor Bob Tharp (left) re­ceived a gift of $1,000 from Matt Cooper, Dol­lar Gen­eral re­gional man­ager, and Scott Fra­zier (back row), store man­ager, out­side the Dol­lar Gen­eral Plus-Plus store on Main Street in De­catur July 21. Dol­lar Gen­eral’s do­na­tion will go to­ward the pur­chase of goals for the Vet­er­ans Park Soc­cer Com­plex.

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