Let’s get serious about recreation

Published 11:39 pm Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Natchez and Adams County needs to get serious about recreation — and fast.

On Tuesday, Adams County Supervisors began discussing the improvements needed to Chester-Willis Field.

The fact that we’re still discussing the ready for retirement facility underscores just how big of an understanding gap we have in the community.

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Each election season, residents bring up recreation as a key issue. And our elected leaders promise to do something about the issues, but we rarely seem to get any traction on the issue.

What residents get is a lot of promises and perhaps some new paint and maybe a few boards here and there — patches, if you will.

Chester-Willis Field, long a Miss-Lou baseball tradition, has seen better days. The bleachers are unsafe and the bathroom and concession facilities should be put out to pasture, too.

But rather than simply figuring how to slap some paint and some duct tape on it, let’s get out of the box and do some serious thinking about what we need to do long-term.

One local leader privately suggested recently that the county should consider selling the property outright and using the proceeds to buy some land away from the retail development area. While it may make the nostalgic among us cringe a bit, from a business perspective, the idea is worth considering.

In the end, the community may decide to do something totally different, but we need to have a couple of quick, public forums to find out what the community wants and for how much they’re willing to pay.

It’s time to step up to the plate and turn years of talk into some action. But we need to do so together, working as one community, with a singular purpose.