Mayor Jim Gray and Councilmember James Brown today joined the Winburn neighborhood in celebrating the opening of a new concession stand at Martin Luther King Park.
“This new concession stand will lift up an important youth sports tradition that has been part of this park for several decades,” Gray said. “Thanks to dedicated coaches, board members, parents and fans, these teams are about winning much more than games. These programs are about making winners of the young men who learn the importance of teamwork and hard work here.” The MLK Broncos, Lexington Ducks and Winburn Pirates play at the park. (View video.)
Councilmember Brown said, “This ribbon-cutting event is more than a ceremony to open this new building. It’s symbolic of the commitment that our Mayor and Council have made to invest in the youth and families of this community that surrounds MLK Park. The same way Coach K.T. and Mr. Fields have been committed to investing in the youth of our community for over 30 years!"
Gray recognized two coaches, who have been a vital part of the winning Bronco tradition for many years:
Broncos Coach Kenneth “KT” Smith has coached at MLK Park for 28 years. He has been a coach for Lexington Parks and Recreation for 41 years.
Broncos Assistant Coach Charles Fields has been a coach for 37 years. He has worked for Parks and Recreation as the supervisor of MLK Park for 28 years.
The new concession stand is one of several recent improvements at the park. “Community partners and neighbors have worked with Parks & Recreation to invest in Martin Luther King Park,” said Monica Conrad, Director of Parks and Recreation. “The new park amenities provide greater recreational opportunities.” The City will add a multi-purpose field later this year. Habitat and neighbors have worked together to add landscaping, paint facilities and to remove invasive honeysuckle. And the City is adding benches and trash cans.
Since 2011, Gray has invested over $15 million in parks improvements citywide.
The new concession stand will support fund-raising for the park’s teams. The attached restrooms will be open during events and games at the park, located at 1625 McCullough Drive.
After visiting the park in 2015 and seeing the dilapidated condition of the previous concession stand, Gray included an investment of $200,000 in the concession stand in the 2016 budget. Brown later added $45,000 to that.