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Saanich Peninsula soccer group finally gets new turf pitch

Peninsula FC brought project to life after years-long fundraising effort
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The final touches were being put on the brand-new turf field at Blue Heron Park on Feb. 26. (Mark Page/News Staff)

Saanich Peninsula soccer players will finally be able to play year-round at Blue Heron Park after a 15-year wait.

“The intent when they built those soccer fields was to put turf field in at that time,” said Dale West, president of Peninsula Soccer. “That was way back in 2009.”

The issue is that whenever it rains in the winter months and people play on grass fields it becomes a mucky mess and destroys the grass, which can take months to regrow.

The turf isn’t perfect in that it needs some maintenance and will eventually need replacement, but a bit of rain doesn’t render it unusable like a grass pitch.

“The number of times a grass field needs to be closed in order to preserve the field when it rains is more times than we care to remember,” West said.

With finishing touches being put on the $1.7 million facility at the end of February, the field is already in use. The official, grand opening is scheduled for March 9.

The money was raised through contributions from three municipalities, North Saanich, Sidney and Central Saanich, with North Saanich putting up the most cash.

Because the field is in North Saanich, West said it took a bit of effort to convince the others to kick in some funds too.

“We were looking to get funding from all three of those areas, and for the longest time, we would only be able to get one,” West said.

West expressed a sense of relief after the years-long fundraising effort.

“Relieved, happy, excited, and thankful that the community was there for supporting us and sticking through the delays,” he said. “We can actually exhale and breathe and relax now.”

The facility will provide a home for Peninsula FC, as well as a place for people to rent out or just come kick a ball around.

“It’s a benefit for everybody,” West said.

READ MORE: Saanich school not giving up on six-year mission to redo sports fields





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