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Winfield Park nears opening, supported by nearly $1 million in local donations

Funds were recently approved to complete Winfield Park on Salem Bottom Road, pictured Friday, June 26, 2020.
Funds were recently approved to complete Winfield Park on Salem Bottom Road, pictured Friday, June 26, 2020. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

A baseball park that’s been nine years in the making will soon open across from Winfield Elementary School.

The finishing touches on Winfield Park are scheduled to be complete this summer, for a potential fall opening of the nine-acre park, according to Jeff Degitz, director of recreation and parks for the county.

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The Carroll County commissioners Thursday approved the transfer of $40,000 in the recreation and parks budget to address the remaining to-do list, which includes removing a temporary sediment trap, finishing off the baseball diamond, adding benches and installing a park entrance sign. The park’s main feature is the baseball field, Degitz said.

“This has probably been the most interesting capital project that I have worked on in all of my years with Carroll County,” Degitz told the commissioners.

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Funds were recently approved to complete Winfield Park on Salem Bottom Road, pictured Friday, June 26, 2020.
Funds were recently approved to complete Winfield Park on Salem Bottom Road, pictured Friday, June 26, 2020. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

Nearly $1 million in labor, equipment and materials were donated over the years by local contractors such as Kinsley Construction, M.T. Laney and C.J. Miller, plus $15,000 from the Nathan Chris Baker Foundation, and volunteers and funding from Winfield Reaction Council, according to Degitz. He suspects the park gained so much support because the community really wanted it to be built.

Typically, a ball field would be built by grading the high side of a hill and pushing dirt to the low side, but Degitz said they didn’t have money for that.

“When we purchased it, it was a hill. It was not something where you would build a ball field,” Degitz said.

Fortunately, there were lots of construction projects going on in the area, such as widening of Md. 26 and Md. 32.

“Contractors had a need to get rid of dirt. We had a need for dirt, so it was a match made in heaven,” Degitz said. They built up the hill and made it flat for a baseball field.

The county bought the property in 2011 using Program Open Space funds and impact fees, Degitz said. Its purpose was to replace a location on Streaker Road that was originally going to be developed and used by the Winfield Recreation Council. In 2013, the commissioners allotted $50,000 for the park’s design. The recreation council took on the remainder of the development cost.

Funds were recently approved to complete Winfield Park on Salem Bottom Road, pictured Friday, June 26, 2020.
Funds were recently approved to complete Winfield Park on Salem Bottom Road, pictured Friday, June 26, 2020. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

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