PA Rotary helps LSCPA rebuild field

Published 12:07 am Saturday, January 30, 2021

They don’t call the Rotary Club of Port Arthur a service organization for nothing.

President Dr. Johnny Brown and Treasurer Mrs. Delilah Francis presented a club check for $2,000 to the Athletics Department at Lamar State College Port Arthur on Wednesday, Jan. 27.

The money is for a fund established by Director of Athletics Scott Street to pay for expenses incurred in rebuilding and repairing damage to the Seahawks softball team’s home field left in the wake of Hurricane Delta last October.

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On the backside of the Category 2 storm that did its most damage in Louisiana, wind gusts of about 100 miles per hour blew across Martin Field, the historic softball field bordered by the seawall and Lakeshore Drive. Fences were blown down, roofs were torn off dugouts and the small press box building was flipped. Damage was estimated at $50,000. Law prohibits schools from using state funds for athletic facilities.

“The Rotary Club exists to provide service to the community; in particular, helping our youth,” Brown said. “We heard about the major storm that damaged the softball field and felt it would be appropriate to chip in and help one of our great institutions, Lamar State College Port Arthur.

“Such a donation aligns perfectly with our purpose.”

The Seahawks have begun their 2021 season by playing weekend tournaments on the road. Their first home appearance, a 1 p.m. double-header against Kilgore College, is set for Feb. 26.

“We’re very appreciative of the donation,” said Seahawks head coach Vance Edwards, who was on hand at the Parker Center with several of his players for the check presentation.

“The rebuild looks real good,” Edwards said. “The fences are up, the dugouts have roofs. We’re [practicing] on the field and we’re happy.”

Street said his fund-raising goal of $50,000 was off to a good start.

“We’re very appreciative of the support of the Rotary Club of Port Arthur,” the AD said. ”We’ve raised probably 50 to 60 percent of our goal, but we’re still looking for additional help to complete the project.”