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Keokuk City, School Meet To Talk Facilities

Keokuk, IA – The City of Keokuk and the Keokuk School District appear to be on the same page when it comes to the future of several athletic fields.

The city allows the district to use the public baseball and softball fields at Joyce Park and the tennis courts near Calvert Stadium. The two sides met for more than an hour to see if any changes are needed to the agreements governing those facilities.

School Board President Sandy Stark says the agreements are working well. She says the district would like to see the agreements reviewed more often.

The meeting also covered potential infrastructure improvements.

Head softball coach Merle Jones told the city council he would like to see a practice softball diamond built between the two fields at Joyce Park. He says it could be done at a minimal cost due to community volunteers.

Jones and head baseball coach Wes Ames both feel an indoor hitting facility (75' x 90') would greatly improve their teams. They say it could also be used for golf practice during inclement weather.

Head girls tennis coach Mark Marsot says the district's facility would improve with at least two more courts. He says that would help during larger events.

Head boys soccer coach Bob Thomas says additional soccer fields at Joyce Park could spur more use by younger students.

Mayor Dave Gudgel says the practice softball field could move forward, given the potentially reduced cost, with the approval of the Joyce Park Commission. He says the future of the other projects will likely depend on where they rate in the district's ongoing facilities review.

The city would likely lead the way in funding for projects at the tennis courts or in Joyce Park.

The meeting also covered potential fundraisers at the facilities and whether additional insurance is needed between the two sides. Business Manager Greg Reynolds says the insurance agent for both the city and the school are reviewing that.