(Leitchfield, KY) – The much debated aquatic center proposed for Leitchfield has already seen larger bills than the commission had approved, but could be offset with future savings to new ball fields.
During a meeting of the Leitchfield Tourism Commission this week the commissioners approved an $8,000 bill for the completed core drilling. The initial approved amount for the core drilling was $6,500, but the company performing the drill test, American Engineering, Inc., said they had to drill deeper than they had initially anticipated.
The core drills located the rock lying underground on the acreage the pool is to be constructed, and found the best location for the pool area.
With the architectural phase 75% complete, the project is still on track for bidding to begin on August 1, 2013, according to meeting minutes.
The commission discussed the budget for the aquatic center and how some of these expenses could benefit the entire land area for future projects, and not just the pool area. Commissioner Randy Pauley made a motion for expenses benefiting the entire land to come from the general fund and not from the bond money, with the exception that if any money is left in the bond account upon completion of the pool it will go back to the general fund. The vote carried, according to the minutes.
The commission held a bond sale on April 2, 2013 for an official amount of $4.95 million.
The possible expenses that could benefit the entire land were also discussed during the commissioners March meeting, and included approving $30,000 for materials for a sewage pump station that will come from the front of the ECTC Kelly Campus and will allow future sites to pump back into the facility. The city will complete the work.
Excavation and hauling dirt from the proposed future ball fields to help elevate the pool area could leave the ground rough graded for those fields to be built in the future at a lower cost.
The aquatic center is proposed to open in the spring of 2014 and will feature a lazy river, three lap lanes, large slides, zero gravity entry with play-on areas, a separate toddler area, pavilion areas and locker rooms, to name a few of the upcoming sites.
In other tourism business:
The countdown is on for the upcoming combined Freedom Festival and Twin Lakes National Fiddlers Contest. The combined event will be held at the Leitchfield Public Square the third weekend in July. The stage for the fiddlers will remain stationed on the east side of the square with rides spanning down the street in front of the Jack Thomas House. A car show will span the south side of the square, with more rides possibly stationed on the east side of the square. Vendors and crafters will be spread out around the circumference of the entire square. Johnson said this year the vendors will be a mix of for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. Last year during the Twin Lakes National Fiddlers Contest, the organizers were gracious enough to only allow non-profit organizations vend food items and raise funds for their cause. Several school groups have already signed-up to cash-in on the large crowd the duo festival is suspected to draw. Johnson said the non-profit groups will not be charged a fee to setup; however, for-profit groups will have to pay a booth fee. Like last year, the rides will be free on Saturday, July 20th from 2:00 p.m. on.
The commission approved a $5,000 grant for the fiddling festival, again this year, and decided the group needed to reapply for the grant annually.
Filming for the ‘Today in America’ television segment is set to begin on June 25th and will feature several tourism attractions throughout the county. Terry Bradshaw is the show’s host but will not be in Grayson County for the filming. Director Johnson said the tourism commission is paying up to $5,000 towards the project, as is the City of Leitchfield, the Industrial Development Board, and the Twin Lakes Regional Medical Center, for a total investment of up to $20,000.
Community Educator Angie Jones is undertaking the project to name the new aquatic center. She is going to seek student involvement this summer and present a possible name on July 23, 2013.
Jose Soto requested a $2,500 grant to host the 11-year-old Cal Ripken state tournament in Leitchfield. The grant request was approved.