Plans for Sykes Park Changed

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After the flooding in April, Lauderdale County District 4 supervisor, Joe Norwood, said it would not be possible to use the new fields at Q. V. Sykes Baseball Complex until next year. Then two circumstances changed the outlook.

"One is that the city is obligated to a 13 and a 14-year-old tournament in July, and second is we received $120,000 from FEMA to repair the damage that was done here," said Norwood.

The tournament is a state event for which the city made a successful bid to host bid some time ago. Each age group is expected to bring in ten teams.

"The only place we could have a tournament is to play it on these fields and right now the city or the county is doing everything possible to make sure that we have these fields in a position that the 13 and the 14 years olds can host a statewide tournament here come July," Norwood said.

The storms did a great deal of damage to the new complex. "There was quite a bit of erosion damage done," the supervisor said. "Fencing right now is one of the major problems that we have. We can get that repaired. The wind twisted some of the lighting from the way they were set. The pumping station went out. Just those kind of things."

The key now is making sure the access roads are built so the city can get in there and maintain the fields. Norwood said at least two of the three fields will be usable for the tournament.

"The fields will not be 100% completed but it will be in a position where we can play baseball in here come July," said Norwood, "and we will take our time during the fall and the spring and making sure that we bring this facility back up to the standards that it was designed for."