March 8, 2005

WNCC's Baseball Field Becoming Reality

WNCC has begun construction on its first baseball field at the Carson City campus! Heavy equipment began turning up sagebrush just east of the Cedar Building on Monday, March 7, for the new intercollegiate athletic facility.

Initial construction will include grading, building retaining walls and dugouts, perimeter fencing and backstop, and installation of artificial turf. It is scheduled for completion by June 15. The estimated cost of the first phase is $1.4 million, to be paid entirely by private donations from individuals and companies in Western Nevada.

In addition to serving as the home field to the new Western Nevada Wildcats baseball team, Carson City will have secondary use of the field for community teams. The "Field of Dreams" may one day host the Nevada High School Baseball Championships and possibly American Legion/Babe Ruth championships and/or tournaments.

The synthetic playing surface, "Fieldturf," will allow for year-round use as it drains exceptionally well. The synthetic surface will also save the college an estimated $50,000 per year in maintenance costs as it does not need to be watered, cut, or fertilized. Seven professional baseball organizations play their games on the same type of surface, including the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Minnesota Twins and Washington Expos.

The lead gift of $800,000 was made in honor of John L. Harvey a former Carson City Rotarian and Presbyterian minister. The gift comes from the owners of the Wingfield Nevada Group. The Wingfield Nevada group is headed by Harvey Whittemore and Tom Seeno and owns and operates The Resort at Red Hawk in Sparks. The group is also developing Coyote Springs, 30,000 acres north of Las Vegas. In addition to providing the lead gift the Wingfield construction team is managing the building of the stadium. CEO Brad Mamer has been instrumental in the success and timeliness of the project. Tim Schobert and Rusty Heberger have teamed up to provide the expertise to successfully build a project of this size. Terry Reynolds is acting as liaison between the project and the city and state governmental agencies involved in special use permits.

Other area residents and companies working closely with the Wingfield Nevada Group on the project include Chris Coombs of WoodRodgers Engineering, and Lawrence Huber and Max Hershenow of Hershenow and Klippenstein Architects. The partners of WoodRodgers donated $10,000 of their time towards the civil engineering and agreed to bill additional costs below retail. Management of Hershenow and Klippenstein donated $3,000 of time and materials toward the design of the facility and are continuing working at cost as the college plans phase II and phase III.

Several other companies have been instrumental in funding of the stadium project. Kyle Holt of Basalite in Carson City has donated materials including 4,300 cinder blocks. Grading of the field is being done by Sema at a large discount. Greg Lehman of Cinderlite Trucking in Carson City has provided 3,000 yards of drain rock at a substantial savings. Don Haack of PDM Steel in Reno is providing 17,000 pounds of rebar at a discounted price. The Millard family, owners of The Plaza Hotel in Carson City is providing lodging for the construction workers at a heavily discounted rate.

Dennis and Susan Banks of Dennis Banks Construction Company have agreed to be the general contractor for the project at no charge. In addition, the company has begun design and agreed to build the stadium's 9,600-square-foot indoor hitting facility. Rick DeMar of the Builders Association of Western Nevada has pledged the support of his group in building the hitting facility. At least $250,000 in donations must be raised to fund it.

WNCC's baseball program is still actively seeking individuals and companies that would like to assist with the project. Many items and funds still must be raised before the stadium project can be completed. Needs include funding for stadium seating, a press box, a concession stand, bathrooms, and team locker rooms.

Links

For additional information, please contact:
D.J. Whittemore
Baseball Coach
Phone: 775-445-3250 ext.
E-mail: DJ.Whittemore@wnc.edu
WNC Information and Marketing Services
2201 W. College Parkway
Carson City, NV 89703
Phone: 775-445-3234
Fax: 775-445-3198
E-mail: info_desk@wnc.edu


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