Lions hear update on Miracle League Park

Friday, June 3, 2016
Sharon Turman with the Miracle League Park of Jonesboro tells the Trumann Lions Club about the activities at the park. (DT Photo/Anthony Cossey)

Sharon Turman was the guest speaker of the Trumann Lions Club last Wednesday, and she gave the group an update about what's been going on and what's coming up at the Miracle League Park in Jonesboro.

"I see a lot of old faces and old friends with some new faces mixed in. I really miss you guys," Turman said in opening. "The Miracle League Park was a God thing from the beginning."

The park is a rubberized field built especially for those who have to use walkers or are in wheelchair, but all who have special needs can play. "The little kids are having a blast playing on the new field, but I so enjoy watching the older kids play. They've had to sit back and watch as their siblings and friends have gotten to play, and now they are getting to play," Turman said. The age range to play is four and up with a 72-year-old being the oldest to play at the park.

The park opened on Oct. 25, 2014, and has been a big hit from the beginning. The first year of softball, there were 92 players, and that number rose to 98 players this past season. There are two seasons of baseball: the spring season runs from April 1 to June 1, and the fall season is from Sept. 1 to Nov. 1. Games are played on Saturday.

The park is all inclusive and is open for everyone to come and enjoy. The park has a huge playground for the kids (and adults) to play on as well as a quiet room. "The quiet room is awesome for those with autism who get overwhelmed with all that is going on. It has LED lights, a snugly swing, and a soft area for the kids to use to help calm down," Turman said. The room was made available with the help from the Autism Association for Northeast Arkansas.

Turman said the park is not only for playing baseball but is used for other things as well. Movies in the Park are a big hit with movies being show the last Saturday of each month. The park was also used for an Easter Egg Hunt this year with 5,200 eggs being laid out. "Another joy to get to see the kids do something they've never had the opportunity to do before," Turman said.

With over $400,000 still owed on the park, Turman told the group of some events that have happened and some that are coming up. The city of Weiner has a pig roast every year--this year was the fourth--and has raised over $80,000 for the park. Frog gigging and softball tournaments have also been held to help raise money. A motorcycle sports ride is set for July 16. The ride will start at Miracle Park and go to the Trumann Sports Complex where the riders will toss horseshoes. The next stop will be at Gavin's Downtown Restaurant in Harrisburg, followed by a stop at Penny's in Weiner. The riders will then shoot archery at Valley View High School and end the ride with golf at Craighead Forest.

Turmann told the group in closing that she wanted word to get out more about he park. "We have a Facebook page, and I invite those who do social media to go take a look at it. If you have to chance to come out to the park and watch a game, I sure hope you will," Turman said.

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