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Decatur’s Ebster Field will be converted to synthetic turf

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Decatur’s Ebster Field will be converted to synthetic turf

FILE PHOTO: Children head for the eggs during STAR Afterschool Program’s annual “Say No To Drugs” egg hunt at Ebster Park in the city of Decatur on Friday, April 15, 2022. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Decatur, GA — The field at Ebster Park in Decatur will be converted from natural grass to synthetic turf. The work is expected to begin this year. 

“Ebster Field is a natural surface, multi-use athletic field,” Capital Projects Manager Hugh Saxon said. “Presently, it is used for a variety of sports and other activities by the Decatur Active Living Department, the City Schools of Decatur, and the Decatur Housing Authority, including soccer, football, lacrosse, ultimate Frisbee and summer camps.”

The field is difficult to maintain at a high-level due to its heavy, year-round use, Saxon added.

“The city commissioners have approved a budget for converting the field to a synthetic turf surface and adding a new LED athletic field lighting system to provide opportunities for evening activities during the fall, winter and spring. The field will be lined for a variety of sports,” he said. 

The work is anticipated to start in 2023 and will take about six months, depending on the weather and availability of the materials.

Ebster Field is located on Electric Avenue, next to the City Schools of Decatur central office and the Ebster Recreation Center.

“Ebster Field has been the location for various clinics [for] football, soccer, ultimate Frisbee and lacrosse,” Active Living Director Greg White said. “Some of the challenges that we have faced have been drought conditions and making sure the field is watered. When we get heavy rain, the field needs several days to dry and this impacts programming.”

Currently, the field does not have lights, which limits practice times in the fall due to early night fall. The field will remain multiuse for the city, the school district and community events, he added.

The city budgeted $50,000 for the project design in the fiscal year 2021-2022 budget, and $215,000 is included in the FY 2022-2023 capital projects fund for the project.

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