Some last-minute touches are underway a few days from opening night at Fort Saskatchewan’s new CFL-quality sports field.
Crews are testing the sound system and working on some landscaping ahead of Friday’s (June 8) inaugural game at the $10 million Taurus Field, which has been under construction for about a year.
Dow Centennial Centre manager Kelly Almer expects to see a packed house for Friday’s exhibition game between the Fort Sask High Sting and the Westlock Thunderbirds. Almer said some minor football players who’ve been using the field for spring training the past couple weeks were very excited about how the field looks and feels.
“I think it's important people understand that this is as a top-line level of a field as anywhere in Canada. This is as good as BMO Field, Commonweath Stadium,” Almer said. “The Grey Cup could be played on this field. A World Cup FIFA level soccer game could be played on this field.”
The bleachers at the artificial turf field, which will be used mainly for soccer, football and rugby, have room for over 1000 spectators. The facility also has a warm-up area, digital wireless scoreboard and four expandable dressing rooms.
Groups who book the facility will also have access to the ticket booth and concession stand, which includes hookups for gas barbecues.
The broadcast booth that overlooks the field includes separate space for announcers, media, stats people and room for each team’s spotters and coaches to call plays. A viewing tower on top of the booth will give video cameras an unobstructed view of the action.
“It's an extremely high-level field that residents of Fort Sask can be very, very proud of,” Almer said.
Gates open at 5 p.m. for Friday’s game, with the Sting and Thunderbirds taking to the turf at 6 p.m.