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Vidalia recreation complex to open Dec. 4

VIDALIA — More than seven years after its initial conception, an official opening date for the new $6.5 million Concordia Parish Recreation District No. 3 complex has been set.

Located adjacent to the new Vidalia Municipal Complex, the recreation complex will open on the same day as the first phase of the city’s separate — though not noticeably separate — park, Dec. 4.

Recreation District No. 3 President Marc Archer said the opening will be from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m., and will function like an open house.

“People can come through and walk around and view everything, just check it out for themselves,” Archer said.

With the opening of the complex, the recreation district’s spring ball programs will move from their long-time location at the ball fields behind Vidalia Lower Elementary to the new site.

“They have already got tournaments lined up to come in,” Archer said. “We are pretty excited.”

The recreation complex was a joint project of the recreation district and the City of Vidalia. The recreation district purchased 20 acres of the land on which the complex sits, while the city purchased an additional 30 acres, ultimately leasing that land to the district long-term.

The recreation district funded the construction of the complex.

The city later purchased additional land, on which the municipal complex is located, and has plans for a five-phase park project that will complement the recreation complex.

The first phase of the city park included three basketball courts, lighting for tennis courts, shelter and restrooms.

The second phase for the park, which is tentatively scheduled to open for use by spring 2013, is slated to include concession stands, improvements to a fishing pond — including an elevated walking trail — and a spray grounds.