December 2017

SportsTurf provides current, practical and technical content on issues relevant to sports turf managers, including facilities managers. Most readers are athletic field managers from the professional level through parks and recreation, universities.

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Page 42 of 51

www.spor 43 December 2017 // "Painting turf." Lance Barber "Chicago Cubs' turf manager." Patrick Bellich "Any job that includes sunshine and fresh air." Chris Roozing "I enjoy working for sports turf managers. Becoming one is not something that I want to do at this point in my career." Travis Jacobson How do you see the sports turf manager's job changing in the future? "As technology keeps improving the sports turf managers job will evolve to include managing those technologies, e.g., automated irrigation with infiltration and moisture controls, rootzone temperature controls, grow light systems and perhaps construction of new fields that are orientated so natural patterns of Mother Nature aid in the overall wellness of the sports turf product. " Chris Roozing What attracted you to a career in sport turf management? "There are a lot of opportunities to grow in sport turf. Already have a passion and a lot of knowledge in sports from both playing and coaching. Great work environment being around sports." Patrick Bellich How are you using social media at work? "Posting Pictures of the job done. Sharing pictures in social media showing friend's family of the city stadium work and parks. Sharing pictures when at events around the city to spread the news. Movie nights, rugby games and beer fest." Anthony Borja What are your biggest challenges in providing excellent playing surfaces? "Repairing the pitch after tournaments, if the surface was wet during games, they get pretty torn up. We need more time between games for recuperation. Removing snow from the pitch without tearing it up. "We pre-germinate our seed and mix with sand, it pops really fast. To remove snow we use small equipment, which doesn't damage grass. Can't do much for the time we have for repair time between games. Just do our best with the time we have." Jody Yonke What is the greatest pleasure you derive from your job? "Being able to work outside." Noah Windschitl Biggest headache? "Players practicing on the stadium playing field." Noah Windschitl Why STMA should consider your field a winner? We decided to install a heat system on a portion of the field to ensure playability and safety on one side of the field. The project was done completely in house from the design to the installation. Mark Razum with the Colorado Rockies was a big help in the initial specs on the wires that were originally installed in his facility. The heat cables changed how we manage a portion of the field but provide a huge benefit to the overall safety of a problem area. In preparation for the home opener on March 12 we were asked to remove grow blankets on February 29. This enabled the team to practice a few times leading up to their opening day. This led to a number of issues mainly weather uncertainty at this time of the year. Practices are very stressful on the playing surface and recovery is a long process until our ground temperatures come around. Because of our limited manpower basically when the grow blankets come off they don't typically go back unless there is an extended away game stretch. This year the first scheduled weekend off for the pitch was supposed to be July 17. The first part of the year was extremely challenging in that we ended up on the first seven games we ended up with a significant amount of snow that had to be plowed off the field. The field has no apron and only one entrance so all the snow is piled up on the berms on the sides of the field. With snow in the forecast I worked most of these weeks on removing the snow throughout the week to make sure that there was space to pile more accumulation for the following week. To add to the fun this year a professional Rugby league was formed and Glendale was chosen as the home field for one of the teams. The professional team trained mainly on outlying areas but used the playing surface for captain's runs and game days. The professional league did not finish their full schedule of games at our stadium because of financial issues. This was a huge help in that it gave us an opportunity to gear up and have some much needed recovery time before our August tournament. The tournament this year added a college tournament leading up to the international competition. In total we ended up with four days of play with a total of 80 games played. The seven's games are only 14 minutes so play is fast and furious. That equates to a total of 18.5 hours of actual play in the 4-day span. We ended up with a lot of divots but held up really well considering the amount of play. Sporting Grounds Category Rugby is a unique sport and foreign to many of us. The game will be played even if there is a foot of snow on the ground. We have very little say on whether or not a game should be played. It is up to us to make sure that the field is a playable and safe surface but do not have much input on cancelation or rescheduling. The game always goes on even if there is an injured player on the field. Rugby players see themselves as tough and see this as being just a part of the game. /ST/

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