The SODA Blog

The official blog of the Sportsplex Operators & Developers Association

A Rake is a Rake…Or Is It ?


Aug 24, 2015 · Paul Zwaska

Rakes of all shapes, sizes and configurations are vital crafting tools for the ballfield groundskeeper. Like the tools in a cabinetmaker’s toolbox, each tool has its preferred use and specialty on a ball diamond. Some can be fairly specialized while others can be used for a wide variety of operations. Just like a supermarket’s cereal or chip aisle, there are more choices then one knows what to do with sometimes. Most of the chores you will perform with your rakes/grooming tools include the following:

  • General raking – Just moving soil around, raking out the trash, rocks, and spoils
  • Rough grade work – When the grade doesn’t need to be precise and totally smooth
  • Fine grading – Sod prep, infield skin leveling or game ready finish
  • Back raking – Using the rake in a reverse direction (pushing) in order to fluff up or cut shallow fine textured valleys and ridges in the infield soil or topdressing to speed drying of the surface of an infield skin after a rain event
  • Scarification – Cutting down high spots on clay or infield skin areas, loosening the surface of the soil areas
  • Lip Removal – Loosening and removing soil and topdressing that is glued into the turf edges of the skinned area or warning track by rain and irrigation

Which tools work best for each operation? Below is a chart that looks at the various tasks and ranks how each of the tool’s performances typically pan out. Keep in mind that ultimately the choice of tools for a task usually falls on the personal preference of the groundskeeper performing the task. Everyone has their favorites but the chart should give you a place to start if you are looking for the right tool for the job.

Long Tooth Aluminum Grading Rake:

Your basic standard issue ground crew rake. Nothing special here, but it can do most basic jobs fairly well and usually comes in several different widths, from 24” to as wide as 60”, depending on the tooth style chosen. These rakes tend to be the workhorse of a ground crew. They can take the real “bull” work of rough grading and general raking better than any other rakes.

Short Tooth Aluminum Grading Rake:

The short tooth rake leaves a fine grade, good for finish work after trash (pebbles, dead grass clippings, clay chunks, etc.) has been removed on skin areas. The sharper teeth are suitable for shallow scarifying. Will struggle if used for general raking or rough grading. You really need the longer teeth for that operation.

Double Play Aluminum Grading Rake:

The best of both worlds! Short and long teeth on one rake makes this rake more versatile. It can be used in many different applications. This rake is not for everyone though. Some people prefer to have the straight edge on one side of the rake instead of teeth on both sides.


 Wooden Grading Rake:

A great all-around rake, a wooden grading rake is not as bulky and awkward as an aluminum grading rake. This lightweight rake truly excels with finesse work where detailed finish grading is desired. I’ve found that groundskeepers either really love this rake or they hate it. It all comes down to personal preference. The teeth are easily replaced if broken. Unfortunately the main manufacturer in the U.S. recently moved their plant and the over 100 year old machine that creates these rakes is proving very testy as they attempt to get it up and running. We hope it returns soon.

 Aluminum Screening Rake:

If you are dealing with pebbles and rocks on your infield skin, this rake can be your best friend. The screening rake, combined with a steel mat drag and a sifter scoop shovel will help to greatly reduce the population of pebbles and stones in the infield skin over time. This rake will also do an adequate job in rough grading and removing other trash from the soil as it is graded.

 Iron Rake:

There are several things to look for in order to have the right iron rake that can be productive for you.

1) Use a “level head” rake (T-shaped head as pictured to the left).   Avoid a “bow rake” as these tend to vibrate or jump when pulled on hardened soil.

2) Make sure it has curved teeth. The curve places the teeth at a better angle for cutting into soil.

3) Sharpen the tines on the back. Grind the bottom ¼ of the tine of the rake on the back side down to a sharp point as illustrated to the left. A sharpened rake reduces the amount of effort the operator must apply in order for the rake to cut into the soil. This is especially true when shaving down high spots in mound and home plate clay areas and shaving out the small hardened lips along the turf edges of the infield skin.

Fan/Leaf Rake:

Used mainly for removing loose infield soil and topdressing out of turf edges before rain or irrigation glues it in tightly.

Lute Rake:

There are lots of different lute scarifying rakes available on the market, but the key to this lute rake is the curve in the rake head. That simple improvement over the other flat lute heads improves its ability to pull larger amounts of soil on the flat edge side without excessive operator fatigue. The curve also improves the performance of this tool for back raking wet infield skins on the serrated edge, especially those using infield topdressing.

Level Board:

The level board is the best fine hand grading and leveling tool available for groundskeepers. The stainless steel reinforced edge insures a strong cutting edge while the relief angle on the back of the level board head allows the tool to float on the surface more easily than the back of any metal rake. The 54” wide head improves grading and leveling on large areas. You should pperate it in much the same manner as a road grader operates its blade.

 This blog provides a general direction as to the grooming tools to use for the tasks listed but every groundskeeper has an opinion or favorite tool. Lets get some feedback from our readers/groundskeepers out there. Tell us your preferred grooming rakes for various tasks or whether you agree with our ranking of the tools.

    •  Beacon Athletics

    • 800-747-5985

    • 8233 Forsythia St., Suite 120

      Middleton, WI 53562

      Customer Service Center M-F 7:00 am – 4:30 pm (CST)

      Toll-Free: 800-747-5985



Wear and Tear of the Groundskeeping Staff !


Aug 11, 2015 · Adrianne Machina

Football season is underway at all levels across America. Teams have begun to prepare themselves for the long season ahead.  As a result, this is also the time of year when recreational baseball/softball fields may also be forced into double duty posing as football fields – which used to be standard practice for Major League Baseball and NFL Football. Today, heightened expectations for what a field “should” look like, along with heavily scheduled fields across multiple sports, can take its toll on the groundskeeping staff.

Dual Purpose Stadiums . . . . .

When I was a kid/young adult back in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, dual purpose stadiums were the norm in professional sports. These fields would get torn up as they switched back-and-forth between football and baseball.  It was one of the reasons for the birth of the artificial turf industry back in the mid-60’s.

In those days, it was acceptable to have some wear (in some cases a lot of wear) on those professional fields during the overlap of sports seasons in August, September and October.  Groundskeepers didn’t like it, but they did their best to minimize the extent of damage and everyone understood for the most part.

The Ballpark Building Frenzy Changed Expectations . . . . .


Once we hit the mid-80’s and continuing through the turn of the century, there was a stadium/ballpark building frenzy as many cities erected new ballparks and football stadiums.  These new athletic facilities were always single sport facilities.  Not only were football and baseball finally separated from each other, but the new field systems provided included much improved drainage systems, irrigation systems and the latest and greatest in turf grass cultivars that were more disease and traffic resistant.Additionally, unlike the last century, every game in every league in both of these sports are now on TV, and not the standard definition TV that we had in the previous century that actually hid a lot of problems on a field.  Now we have Hi-Def TV that makes turf damage easier to spot.  Because of this, we have moved into a new era of professional sports turf management where professional fields are expected to be perfect every day.  And should a field have issues or display damage, there becomes much more heightened speculation and banter by observers, sportscasters and others as to what is wrong with the field.

All of this TV coverage adds additional scrutiny on the groundskeeper.  It’s as if a sports field manager is not allowed to have a blade of grass out of order at the professional level.  Most groundskeepers I know are their own worst critic; to many of them they feel their field is only perfect maybe a couple dozen times a year.  I was the exact same way in my years with the Orioles.

The Perfection Expectation is Contagious . . . . .

Unfortunately, this demand for perfection sometimes translates down to the recreational level.   I have talked to many parks and recreation managers through the years who tell me stories of the public using their recreational fields, wondering why their park fields aren’t as good as what they see on TV when watching professional games.  There is obviously a serious disconnect here if the public can’t separate public recreational fields from high-maintenance professional fields that they view on TV.  This is unfair pressure and criticism bestowed on parks and recreation field managers whose resources are usually a small fraction of what the pros have to work with. The modern sports field manager has pressures coming from all directions – heavily scheduled facilities, tight or reduced budgets, limited resources, weather and just not enough hours in a day are some of them. 

Expecting perfect or flawless fields is like asking a ballplayer to always bat 1000% or a doctor to never lose a patient.  As groundskeepers we will all have wear to deal with, more at times than others.  As long as you feel you have done everything in your power and budget to make it safe and playable, that’s what really matters.  Blemishes and wear will come and go.

If you need help stretching your field maintenance budget, our staff is happy to help you plan and prioritize your ordering.  Just give us a call at 800-747-5985.

  • The ultimate ballfield resource. It’s all here. . . . . .

  •  Beacon Athletics

  • 800-747-5985

  • 8233 Forsythia St., Suite 120

    Middleton, WI 53562

    Customer Service Center M-F 7:00 am – 4:30 pm (CST)

    Fax: 608-836-0724




Knockerball set to kick off !


Hammond, LA., locals will soon be able to don large plastic balls at Chappapeela Sports Park and take to the field to play soccer with a crashing and bouncing twist called KnockerSoccer.

“There aren’t that many contact sports for adults out there,” said Ryan Barker, Chappapeela Sports Park director. “I feel like KnockerBall is an innovative new sport where you can get a little contact. You’re running around and kicking the ball, but now there’s contact. You’re playing soccer but you can run straight into someone.”

Barker said they may expand into other sports using the KnockerBalls, but wants to start with soccer, as he said there is always a demand for adult soccer leagues with locals.

“With KnockerBall you get a little more collision, a little more contact and it’s a little safer,” he said. “A lot of retired footballers are really into this. They say they’re getting that contact they did 20 years ago.”

The teams will play on a smaller soccer field in teams of five.

The leagues will be organized by Tangi Kickball, which has a Facebook group under the same name, but played at the park.

“I hope people are going to be excited about this and come out and participate,” Barker said.

The KnockerSoccer League plays by the same rules as traditional soccer and is co-ed. No positions, coaches or goalies are needed.

Rules state players cannot intentionally kick the balls or other players with their shoes or feet and no cleats or pointy shoes are allowed.

It is played for two- 15 minute halves with a five-minute halftime. The season is eight weeks long

The cost of a team is $150 for up to eight members. The season starts Sept. 10 and ends Nov. 5. Registration is open now and will close Aug. 31.

There will be a Winter season starting in December and a Spring season starting in March.

Registration is at Chappapeela Sports Park on Hipark Boulevard. For more information, visit Tangi Knockerball on Facebook.




Just Around the Corner ? . . . Fall Renovations !


With autumn sports getting ready to ramp up in the coming weeks and summer baseball/softball season winding down, it’s wise to finalize your fall renovations NOW. It’s always amazing to me how many people in our industry wait till the last minute, scrambling at the eleventh hour to try and pull a project together. Now they may be successful at pulling that off but it surely can’t happen without some stress for the manager and his/ her crew.

The Earlier The Better

If your fall renovations involves bringing in contractors, you’ll want to lock them in quickly before they get booked up for the fall. The rule here is the earlier in the year you can confirm the project, the better. Those who notoriously wait until the last minute to try to hire contractors for their field work will likely find themselves getting shut out because most quality field contractors will already be booked for the season. The earlier you lock them in, the better choice of dates you have to select from for them to complete your project.

Part of your fall renovations may require some quantitative testing, such as a soil fertility test for grass areas. These tests are used to help determine your fertility needs in order to bring your soil fertility up to optimum levels for your turf grass. This is always a good idea, especially going into fall as the soils have been depleted somewhat from the active summer growing season.   The turf plants are in need of nutrients to rebuild their root systems, repair from summer disease and drought damage, and to aide in winter carbohydrate storage as winter dormancy approaches.

Infield Soil Testing

The other testing you should consider would be your infield soils. Did they perform like you wanted them to? Do they take too long to recover after a rain? Are your infield soils stable or loose? Does your infield soil runoff or move dramatically when it rains? These are all signs that your infield soils may need some help in order to bring them into balance to improve performance. Don’t guess what’s wrong with your infield skin; have it tested. Many can test, but few can analyze and interpret the results properly with respect to infield soil use, so choose your testing agency carefully. Beacon was one of the first companies to provide infield soil testing, analysis and recommendations for improvement back in the late 1990’s. We have over 30 years’ experience on staff to find the right solutions for your infield. Get your testing completed soon so when the season ends, you can jump right on that infield soil renovation project if the testing indicates the need for it. With results and recommendations in hand, you can plan and order the soils needed to blend into your infield to correct for any deficiencies.

Once you’ve finished up your testing, organize what work for fall renovations needs to be performed on your ballfields. These projects may include:

Turf Areas:

  • Aerification
  • Overseeding
  • Topdressing
  • Fertilization
  • Regrading to Improve Surface Drainage
  • Sodding
  • Edging
  • Lip Removal

 Infield Skin Areas:

  • Infield Soil Amending
  • Leveling Infield Skin
  • Fortification of High Wear Areas (Batter’s & Catcher’s Boxes, Top Table & Front Slope of Mound)
  • Replacing Worn Pitching Rubbers and/or Home Plates
  • Replacing Old Base Anchors

Choose your projects, order your materials and equipment and begin to strategize how you will schedule the project and your crew.

Planning is an important stage of sports field management. Shooting from the hip causes inefficiencies and idle resources. Proper planning builds efficiency and keeps those resources busy, which usually increases the number of projects that can be taken on and completed during your fall renovations. Don’t hold up your crew(s) by not being prepared this upcoming renovation season. Get your testing completed, make your plans and purchase the products needed so that when the time comes, your crews are ready at the gate. They’ll know where they are going, what they are doing, and have the material and equipment to get the job done in a timely manner.

By: Paul Zwaska


Beacon Ballfields

Customer Service Center open M-F 7am-4:30pm (Central)

800-747-5985  |  fax 608-836-0724



Skokie, IL. Park Board narrows in on final plan for new park !


The Skokie, IL. Park Board appears to be getting closer to making a decision on what will be included as part of a planned new park to occupy 17 acres of property. In the spring, a public hearing on development of Skokie Sports Park East included about a half-dozen plans — some with elaborate features, one even calling for a domed facility.

But Park Board commissioners last week narrowed their options to two plans, and the final plan to be decided on could be a hybrid of the two.

“I’m sure it’s not going to be one plan or the other,” said Park Board President Mike Reid. “I’m sure it will be a combination of the two.”

Park District officials say the park will include a configuration of lit fields that can be used for baseball and softball as well as cricket and soccer. The park will have other amenities as well.

Under the plans, at least some fields would have synthetic turf, which is more costly but makes them much more usable and manageable after heavy rains, project designers said.

Representatives of the Lakota Group and Gewalt Hamilton Associates, Inc., firms that are developing the new park, told the Park Board that synthetic turf fields have become increasingly valuable for recreation facilities like the one Skokie is preparing.

They said there is “virtually no maintenance” involved in these fields.

One of the two final plans presented to the Park Board Tuesday, July 21, is estimated to cost $14 million, the other $20 million. But park officials will have opportunity to streamline a final plan in various ways, which could greatly alter the cost, the project designers said.

Both plans include additional parking from the 148 spaces available there now. The number of spaces at the site would increase to a minimum of 278 and likely more.

The park would also include a splash pad, but its size and configuration are still to be determined, as well as a fitness area.

The process has included input from a number of different sources including park patrons.

Park Board Vice President Susan Aberman said a walking path in or around the park should be viewed as a high priority based on feedback about the proposed park.

“It’s very important,” she said. “If we’re going to do this, we must have a walking trail and the bigger the better.”

Commissioners also were hoping a skate park would be part of the new property, but in the end, the designers said it wasn’t a good fit and called it “incongruent” for the kind of park being developed. Park leaders vowed they will continue to explore options for bringing a skating area to Skokie.

The Skokie Park Board has had its eyes on the property next to Skokie Sports Park for a long time.

The site was once occupied by a gas manufacturing plant, which produced gas from coal from 1910 to the 1940s. Legal challenges and a settlement led to a major $60 million to $70 million environmental clean-up by Nicor Gas and ComEd that began in late 2012. The process if finally winding down this summer.

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District owns the property, the west half of which is leased to the Park District for the sports park. Once the cleanup is completed, the adjoining section will also be leased to the Park District.

Differences in the plans include configurations on how to enter and exit the new park as well as the way fields are laid out and their uses. The designers said there has been a declining desire for fields to accommodate baseball and softball, but the need for soccer, Lacrosse and soccer fields are on the rise.

Some commissioners are planning to take a nearby field trip to the Winnetka Park District to see how one of its parks operates before a final decision is made. Park Board Executive Director John Ohrlund said the Park Board could make a final decision in September.



Seacoast United to buy New England Sports Park !


AMESBURY, MA. —  Always looking to expand his company’s brand of club soccer, field hockey, lacrosse and baseball, Seacoast United vice president Ian Burgess knows a scoring opportunity when he sees one, which is why he will soon be basing his latest soccer club, Seacoast United Admirals out of South Hunt Road’s New England Sports Park.

Burgess  said when he heard that his old friend Tosh Farrell was giving up the lease on the former Amesbury Sports Park’s turf fields as well his own Tosh Farrell Soccer indoor facilities located just down the street, Burgess snapped into action.

“It was combination of things,” Burgess said. “It is a good location, right off I-495, with easy access for a lot of towns. It is going to create a lot of opportunities for a lot of players who potentially want a little bit more development of the sport but also to possibly move on to the next level outside of what their own towns can offer.”

As negotiations between Seacoast, Farrell and sports park owner Ted Dipple began earlier this year, Burgess saw another opportunity and Seacoast is currently under a purchase and sales agreement with Dipple to buy the New England Sports Park itself.

“We came about it after many meeting between Tosh and Ted and both wanted to head in different directions,” Burgess said. “We could have worked out a deal to lease with Ted (but) he was happier with a clean break.”

While he said he expects the sports park deal will be finalized in September, Burgess said that Seacoast took over Farrell’s lease at the beginning of the month.

“It is two separate organizations,” Burgess said. “Obviously we are looking to purchase the sports park itself and that would be ours and controlled by us. Tosh’s indoor facility was a lease that he had set up with the owner of the building. Ideally we would have liked to have leased it closer to the winter. But, as you can imagine, the owner wanted to get somebody in straight-away. So we will use that more in the winter and the sports in the fall, summer and spring.”

Burgess and company took over operations of both Farrell’s indoor and outdoor South Hunt Road locations earlier this week and Tosh Farrell Soccer itself has been rolled into the Seacoast United Admirals which are set to make their debut on the turf fields in August.

“We have already had evaluations for the Admirals,” Burgess said. “I think we are probably going to have 15 teams based out of there originally, but that will definitely grow. We have already had the evaluation nights but we are still looking for extra players.”


New Soccer facility will lease tubing lanes back to Dipple



New Turf Installed At Hummer Sports Park, Topeka, KS. !


TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) — The soccer field and football field at Hummer Sports Park have new turf.

Both fields replaced the old turf that maintenance supervisor Aaron Becker says was more than a decade old.

“We feel like on the last turf it gave us great life with the product,” Becker said. “We got a good twelve years out of it and it was just time to make the change.”


Becker says the entire project costs nearly $800,000.

The fields will be ready for play in late July. Both fields are still without the sand and rubber that cushions the turf.

On the football field, the crew was finishing up the end zones with the Hummer Sports Park logo.

Becker says the field will eventually have a midfield logo.



5 Ballfield Maintenance Tips for A Midseason Shape Up !


Jun 16, 2015 · Paul Zwaska

The baseball/softball season is a long one with games played pretty frequently. The Little League fields that I help oversee has 3 fields — two 60′ and one 90′ diamond. Each of these fields sees approximately 400 events per growing season, including practices, league games, league tournaments, clinics, all-star practices and more. With all this activity, fields can get rundown quickly, especially if maintenance staff is stretched thin. But just a little mid-season love can go a long way toward maintaining the integrity and aesthetics of the ball field. These five mini projects can pay big dividends.

Here are my 5 Favorite Ballfield Maintenance Tips for Midseason:

1. Clean-up your turf edges. Many think turf edging is a lot of work but if you keep up with edging (just a few times per year!) it can be a fairly quick job that a couple of crew members can perform in a very short order of time. String your string lines right on the very edge of the grass so you are just trimming off the stragglers that are growing laterally into the skinned area. On curved areas such as the back arc or cutouts, this can be done by eye but it may take a little practice just to get the hang of making a smooth gradual curve. Use a scuffle hoe to take out any other individual rogue turf plants or weeds coming up in the skin areas. My crew at our Little League complex does this once a month and they can complete all 3 fields (two 60s and a 90) in about 5 hours. The sharp clean edges give the fields a professional look. This is also a good time to address any minor lip issues.

2. Scarify and level infield skin. This is not precision leveling, this is a quick down-and-dirty leveling job used for cutting down the usual high spots and filling in the routine low spots. This can be done easily if you own a three-wheel grooming unit Like a Toro Infield Pro with a box blade. Simply scarify the infield with the nail drag and follow up with the box blade to do a quick level job. For those that don’t have such a three-wheel groomer, scarify/nail drag your infield and use level boards to redistribute infield material from the typical high spots and deposit the material in the typical low spot areas. Finish by dragging the infield, but use your drag either folded in half or rolled up first to further help leveling, then complete the operation by dragging the infield with the drag fully deployed. Maintaining the surface grade to insure positive surface drainage requires constant vigilance and action to prevent the degradation of your surface grade from getting out of hand. Again, like edging, the more often you do it, the less time it takes and the better your infield skin will perform.

3. Redistribute topdressing on infield skin. If your infield skin utilizes a topdressing material, that material will have a tendency to migrate due to rain, dragging, and play. The topdressing usually ends up on the low side of the infield as surface drainage and gravity will pull it there. On a typically graded infield, that means the topdressing piles up along the back arc of the infield. In order to take full advantage of having a topdressing on your infield, it is best to periodically redistribute the topdressing to insure a consistent thickness across the entire infield skin. This usually involves taking a level board and pulling the accumulated topdressing from the edge of the arc of the infield and pulling inwards and feathering it out all of the way to the high point of the infield skin. An even thickness of topdressing across the infield skin helps to promote a consistent bounce of the ball on the infield surface. On a 60’ diamond with infield grass, this will take 10 – 15 minutes. A 90’ diamond with infield grass can take about 25 – 30 minutes. You can essentially double the time for totally skinned infields of each of the 2 respective sizes.

4. Reslope mound. It’s good to pull out the old slope gauge and check the front slope of the mound part way through the season. What it typically will reveal is that you may have been keeping up with the main wear areas but were probably slacking on the slower wearing areas between the high wear areas and because of that, the slope becomes inconsistent and out of whack. Clean off all topdressing and spoils on the mound so you can clearly see the condition of the level table at the top of the mound and the front slope. Using a level, add clay wherever low on the table and cut down any high spots with a sharpened iron rake. On the slope, use a mound slope gauge to accurately return the front slope to its proper specifications, adding clay or cutting down as needed. When finished, soak the mound, add new top dress, and soak again. Then allow to cure somewhat in the sun.

5. Give your home plate area a face lift. Much like the mound, the home plate area will also become all out of whack as well. Sure, you’ll repair the main wear areas, but around those there are areas that wear much slower and are not typically caught by the human eye day-to-day. Again, sweep all of the topdressing and spoils of and remove from the area you are working. This includes the batter’s boxes, the catcher’s box and the umpire area. More than likely the umpire area is too high and needs to be cut down. This results from the catcher kicking material back with his or her cleats as they get into position and the umpire then stepping on the spoils that were kicked out thereby packing them down and creating a high spot. Use a sharpened iron rake or a weighted x-drag to cut this high area down. Also x-drag all around the clay areas to take down any remaining high areas. Sweep clean again. Now you can see where the clay areas are truly low. Wet the area down and let the water be absorbed into the clay. Add clay and use a rake to spread out evenly and level. Compact with tamps and or a roller to fully flatten out. X-drag the remaining home plate area outside of the clay area. Use a level board to cut down high areas, fill low spots and generally level the entire home plate circle. Add topdressing as needed and finish drag the entire home plate area.

If your fields are anywhere near as busy as ours are at our complex, follow these 5 mid-season ballfield maintenance tips to give them the boost they need to make it through the rest of the season, all while looking sharp and playing true.

Tags: ballfield maintenance, ballfield maintenance tips, little league fields, scuffle hoe, x-drag


Managing Sport Facilities – 3rd Edition !

By Gil Fried

Managing Sport Facilities, Third Edition, provides students with the vital information and vocabulary to make smart decisions in all areas of facility management. This edition includes a new chapter on green facility management as well as an instructor ancillary package featuring new video content.


Product Description

Managing Sport Facilities, Third Edition, continues the tradition set by its predecessors of providing future and current sport facility managers with the knowledge they need in order to make the proper decisions in all areas of facility management. Like the previous two versions, the third edition provides a comprehensive understanding of crafting a career in running a sport facility.

The third edition of Managing Sport Facilities engages students with a clear writing style, extensive real-world examples, and information on managing a range of facilities, from smaller health clubs, colleges, and recreational environments to professional sport stadiums. Because managers require current information to meet the needs of new facilities and audiences, this edition has been updated to include the following:

  • A new chapter on green facility management
  • Updated Sport Facility Management Profiles featuring industry experts introducing applied connections for each chapter
  • Expanded Facility Focus sidebars presenting facts and strategies used by real facilities
  • An updated instructor ancillary package, now including instructor videos that feature professionals in the field offering advice and insight

In response to its increasing importance over the last decade, the newest chapter in this text focuses on implementing and maintaining green facilities. This chapter details items that should be considered during the construction of new environmentally conscious facilities as well as information on retrofitting and updating older facilities with green technology, such as recycling initiatives and solar panels. A facility built according to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards may lose its certification if not properly maintained over time, so tips for preserving green facilities are also included.

In Managing Sport Facilities, Third Edition, students will learn the history of the sport facility industry and the primary goals and objectives of facility managers; how to build and finance a facility; facility operation; administration of marketing, finance, and other critical areas; and event administration and management. A comprehensive approach to understanding the wide-ranging job of sport facility managers has been applied, with a structure that builds from general to specific, and finally to practical knowledge in the final chapter. In addition, the text offers updated content in the Sport Facility Management Profiles, Facilities Trivia, Behind the Scenes, and Facility Focus sidebars in each chapter, which bring the theories and concepts to life by citing specific examples of strategies used in making a facility—and the facility manager—more successful. New instructor videos that can be shared during class provide students with a glimpse into the lives of real-world professionals as they provide insight and advice.

Managing Sport Facilities, Third Edition, contains extensive textbook learning aids, including real-world checklists and forms that allow students a glimpse of some of the tools and guidelines that professionals use in their work. Each chapter begins with objectives and an overview and concludes with a summary and discussion questions and activities. The instructor ancillaries will help instructors prepare for and teach classes, and the text itself has an engaging style that makes the reading cogent and easy to remember.

Starting from its already-solid foundation, the new material, updates, ancillaries, and practical learning aids make this third edition the most complete and up-to-date text on the subject. Students using this text will learn what it takes to blend leadership, operations management, and creativity in promotions as they begin their journey to being top-notch sport facility managers.


Part I. Introduction to Sport Facility Management

Chapter 1. History and Future of Sport and Public Assembly Facilities

Facilities in Ancient Times

Facilities From the Middle Ages to the 1800s

Facility Management From Ancient to Modern Times

Evolution of Professional and Collegiate Facilities

Facility Focus

The Future of Sport Facilities

Trends That Will Affect Future Facilities

Chapter 2. Facility Management

What Is Facility Management?

The Facility Manager


Managerial Functions

Chapter 3. Management Theory and Human Resources

Management Theory

Management Research Failure


Computer-Aided Facility Management

Simple Strategies


Sport Facility Jobs

Employment Options

Hiring Process

Employee Management

Legal Concerns

Part II. Facility Development

Chapter 4. Facility Planning

Fundamentals of Planning

Planning for Existing Facilities

Planning for Future Facilities

Chapter 5. Facility Site and Design

Site Location

Site Cost

Site Selection

Facility Design

Chapter 6. Facility Construction

Construction Planning

Preconstruction Phase

Construction Elements

Project Costs

Completion and Analysis

Part III. Facility Systems and Operations

Chapter 7. Facility Systems

Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning

Air Quality

Energy Systems


Interior Systems

Exterior Systems

Combined Interior and Exterior Systems

Chapter 8. Facility Operations

Space Management

Managing Specialized Components

Establishing Grass Fields

Maintaining Grass Fields

Additional Outdoor Concerns

Chapter 9. Facility Maintenance

Maintenance and Repair Program

Maintenance Audits

Maintenance Department

Basic Maintenance and Cleaning

Chapter 10. Green Facility Management

The Need for Green Strategies

Green Solutions

Green Building Design

Green Building Operations

Researching Wise Investments

Part IV. Facility Administration

Chapter 11. Marketing and Sales

Marketing Concepts

The Marketing Process

Facility Marketing


Chapter 12. Finance and Budgeting

Financial Concepts

Revenue and Expenses

Financial Analysis


New Facility Financing

Selling a Facility

Chapter 13. Legal Responsibilities

Basic Law

Tort Law

Risk Management and Insurance


Property Law

Constitutional Law

Government Regulations

Part V. Event and Activity Management

Chapter 14.Implementing a Security Plan

What Is Security?

Crowd Management

Other Safety Concerns

Crisis Management

Chapter 15. Facility Preparation and Event Management

Revisiting Planning

Attracting Events

Event Preparation

Mid-Event Concerns

Postevent Analysis

Postevent Surveys

Marketing for the Future

Marketing Efforts and Costs

Facility Analysis

** Link:


County negotiating with Jordan Foster to complete El Paso Sportspark !

El Paso, TX – The Company that built Downtown ballpark; should finish Sportspark reconstruction in about four months, officials said

[ElPaso CPX]


County negotiating with Jordan Foster to complete Sportspark.

The county is negotiating with Jordan Foster Construction, the company that built the Downtown ballpark, to finish the long overdue El Paso County Sportspark renovation.

County officials expect Jordan Foster to resume work at the Sportspark more than a year after legal issues with the former contractor and architect put the reconstruction on hold. The project, which was supposed to take eight months to complete, started in October 2012.

A contract is expected to go before the County Commissioners Court for approval in the next 30 days, said Norma Palacios, the county’s assistant public works director.

It would then take Jordan Foster about three months to complete the work, Palacios said.

The county selected Jordan Foster through a process called job-order contracting, in which qualified companies are on a sort of on-call list for certain types of projects.

The process is faster than a traditional bidding process, county officials said, because it cuts the time it takes to procure engineering, design and contracting companies. As part of the process, Jordan Foster was one of four companies interviewed by a panel of five people.

A contract amount is expected to be determined in the next couple of weeks, Palacios said.

“Because of the job-order contract process, we now can concurrently negotiate with the contracting firm and don’t have to wait until the architect finishes its job to put the work out to bid,” County Judge Veronica Escobar said.

Earlier this year, the county hired Carl Daniel Architects for $187,500 to oversee the pending construction at the 45-acre Sportspark at 1780 N. Zaragoza.

Escobar said the architect’s work is about 90 percent completed.

County Commissioner Carlos Leon, who represents the East Side area where the Sportspark is located, said he is satisfied with the selection of Jordan Foster.

“I’m very confident that a company such as Jordan Foster will start on the project and finish it. We will have a beautiful completed park in the very near future,” he said.

Jordan Foster Construction is a partnership by C.F. “Paco” Jordan, Paul L. Foster and Darren Woody that merged CF Jordan Construction and Franklin Mountain JFC.

Jordan Foster completed the Downtown ballpark in under a year.

Leon said there is still much work that needs to be completed at the Sportspark, including four fields, a pro shop, a clubhouse and batting cages. Six fields are currently open to the public.

The county is still in a legal dispute with Sunlight Enterprises, the company that was awarded the original $7.5 million Sportspark contract in 2012; the architectural firm Parkhill, Smith and Cooper Inc.; and the bonding company, RLI Corp.

Part of the litigation involves money that the county withheld from Sunlight Enterprises after the company did not complete the project on time.

Leon said that while the legal problems are resolved, the county will move forward to complete the park.