RICHMOND, VA – (Monday, March 2, 2009) – The Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club officially unveiled the name of its new home, tagging the 34.5-acre sports complex Ukrop Park. The environmentally friendly, state-of-the-art park features six lighted athletic fields and a full-scale aquatics center. Ukrop Park is conveniently located in Chesterfield County at the intersection of Chippenham Parkway and Route 10 and utilizes the latest technology in Musco lighting and Sportexe synthetic turf.
The $8.5 million Ukrop Park is slated to open in June 2009 due to aggressive fundraising efforts. The park was named in honor of the Ukrop family, which donated to the project and owns a store adjacent to the site. Plans for the park include six fields, two with artificial Sportexe surface and four with natural grass.
“We are excited to have a state-of-the-art home for the Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club, the area’s first soccer family, that brings people together from across the metropolitan area,” comments Rob Ukrop, Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club President
“It is the Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club’s pleasure to serve our community through building this Park through private fundraising, and we look forward to continuing our outreach to help kids make their dreams come true,” continues Ukrop. “The project is led by Ken Piazza from Draper Aden Associates. We believe we have assembled the right team to build this facility, a team that includes FG Pruitt, Barthol Design Associates, Musco Lighting, Sportexe, Earthworks and Sprinklers, and Icon Lighting.”
The two artificial turf fields at Ukrop Park will feature the Sportexe® EnviroGreen™ System (EGS), a revolutionary new synthetic turf system engineered from the ground up to be environmentally friendly, high-performance and cost effective. The first known environmentally friendly turf system of its kind, the EGS System showcases Sportexe’s high performance Powerblade HP monofilament fiber. The two-tone system gives a natural appearance and excellent ball roll control.
The EGS System produces environmental benefits by reducing the removal of existing base material, saving fuel and disposal impacts, potentially reducing movement of 2,700 yards of material for a standard field. The Sport DrainMax™ drainage mat is composed of 100% recycled material and can be used for up to two cycles of turf. The Sport DrainMax™ shock absorption layer provides a consistent engineered safety across the entire field. The two-part shock absorption layer (mat and infill) enables design optimization of safety (g-max) and playability (vertical deformation, ball rebound). Additionally, all Sportexe products are produced with non-lead based pigments.
“I am extremely excited to be able to build upon my relationship with the Kickers as I enter a new phase of my life,” comments Ronnie Pascale, Sportexe Sales Rep for DC/Virginia/North Carolina and Richmond Kickers goalkeeper. “Sportexe has been in the industry for 19 years and we are getting ready to celebrate our 20th anniversary. We are very eager to enter into this partnership and I am confident that our company will provide the Kickers with the most state-of-the-art complex with the best products available.”
All fields will be served by a Musco lighting system that will allow 80-foot light towers to be turned on and off from a laptop computer or BlackBerry device. Musco’s Light•Structure Green™ technology utilizes Green Generation Lighting that reduces energy consumption by half through increased luminaire efficiency and Control-Link®, an automated scheduling and monitoring system.
Ukrop Park will serve as the home of the Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club’s 64 travel teams and 900 recreational players and will also host major regional soccer tournaments. The park will provide a valuable resource for RKYSC partners, including Midlothian Youth Soccer League, Ashland Youth Soccer League, Goochland United Soccer Association, Fredericksburg Area Soccer Association and the Central Virginia Soccer Association. Furthermore, the Park will function as the training facility for the Richmond Kickers Pro and W-League teams.
In addition to Ukrop Park, Chesterfield County plans to develop two soccer fields and parking at the adjacent Stratton Park site, along the Falling Creek near Ridgedale Parkway and Jessup Road. Up to four miles of trails for hiking, biking and picnicking will eventually be built on the 178 acres that make up Stratton Park.
“We’ve been doing the due diligence and behind-the-scenes work for almost two years trying to get this thing up,” added Ukrop. “I believe this facility will drive tourism and have a positive impact on our community.”
About Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club
The Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club is a 501-C3 non-profit organization that was formed in May 2000 when Eastern FC and Richmond United youth clubs joined forces with the Richmond Kickers Pro Club. Since then, the club has merged with programs in Midlothian, Ashland and Pocoshock.
Today over 4,000 soccer players participate in recreational programs sponsored by the Kickers and partner clubs; Midlothian Youth Soccer League, Ashland Youth Soccer League, City of Richmond Parks and Rec. and Goochland United Soccer Association. The Kickers travel program consists of 64 teams and over 900 players who compete in the US Soccer Academy Program, Super Y-League, VCCL, VSLI and ADSL. The club was recently named as one of only 30 adidas Sports Marketing Clubs in the U.S. The club provides opportunities for all players of all abilities and unites soccer in the Central Virginia community. Benefits include economy of scale, consistency of coaching philosophy, professional administrative and coaching staff expertise, positive role models for youth players and a clear pathway from youth to pro for aspiring young players.
Dedicated to providing proven, technology-rich synthetic field systems worldwide, Sportexe has developed a reputation for unsurpassed quality. With world headquarters in Irving, Texas, Sportexe is an acknowledged leader in surfacing products for the sports industry. Since the incorporation in 1989, Sportexe has been perfecting the finest details that go into making better, safer and higher performing athletic surfaces. This quality has led to success with teams such as the New Orleans Saints, the Baltimore Ravens, University of California, Berkeley, University of Southern Mississippi, University of Alabama, St. Mary’s University and many other teams and sports facilities around the globe.
Sportexe is committed to continually researching and developing superior synthetic turf systems, and offers a complete line of turf systems that fit the distinct needs of each and every sport. Sportexe institutes a rigorous battery of 21 tests and independent studies to maintain a superior product. A continually evolving technology, the Sportexe team of scientists, engineers and designers are hard at work each day, developing and incorporating innovative new features and systems that enhance performance, shock absorption, longevity and fiber characteristics. For more information about Sportexe, visit www.Sportexe.com.
About Musco Lighting
Since 1976, Musco Lighting has specialized in the design and manufacture of systems for lighting recreation and athletic fields. Based in central United States with offices in more than 9 locations around the U.S. and more than 9 offices world-wide, Musco is recognized as a world-class leader in sports lighting with lighting systems installed around the globe. Musco offers innovative systems, a comprehensive package of services and decades of experience, including solutions for permanent and temporary lighting and sports facility management.
Responsible lighting is the focus of Musco’s product development. Most of the technological advancements are a direct result of the concerns and needs expressed by customers and design professionals. These efforts have pioneered dramatic improvements in lighting systems, creating more energy efficient and trouble-free solutions for owners, easy to install technology, enhanced playing conditions for participants and less obtrusive lighting for neighbors and the environment. For more information about Musco Lighting, visit www.Musco.com.