Parents and coaches of Pinson Valley High School athletic teams were not encouraged by what they heard last week from their city council.
The chances of a new artificial-turf field, to replace the well-worn surface at Willie Adams Stadium in time for the coming football season, are next to nil.
“There simply isn’t enough time to get a turf field installed before the fall,” Councilman Joe Cochran told the parents and coaches in Thursday’s regular council session.
The field surface has deteriorated badly because of the heavy use it sees from football, marching bands and soccer, PVHS Athletic Director Matt Glover told the council. “And now the county wants us to add lacrosse on top of all that,” he said.
The Indians’ facility has no practice field, a situation the council has tried to remedy by contributing land the city owns next to the school. It’s also discussed a financial partnership with the Jefferson County Schools for installing artificial turf, similar to an arrangement that the city of Clay has for a new field at Clay-Chalkville High.
Currently, the field has numerous sand-filled ruts and divots down the middle, and coaches and parents worry about injuries from poor footing. “It’s so bad, our kids call it ‘Pinson Valley Beach,’” Glover said.
For now, the city is asking Glover and PVHS boosters to come up with a plan to patch the current surface with new sod, which would run the length of the field between the football hash marks; that would make it playable for at least the next year.
Mayor Hoyt Sanders set a special meeting of the council for May 29, during which it will reconsider a zoning change that would allow a food warehouse to be built along Alabama Highway 75. The change was previously denied, but with one council member absent.