The Goal Is To Help Area Youth Stay Competitive

From left to right: Jessica Willett, Mark Willett, and Laura North.

From left to right: Jessica Willett, Mark Willett, and Laura North.

by Ken Allsup
January 8, 2022

Oskaloosa, Iowa – “Where champions are the last ones to leave” is the slogan of the Oskaloosa Indoor Sports Complex, and it’s important enough that volunteers from around the community donate their time and effort to the area youth so they can fulfill those dreams of being a champion.

Until recently, the indoor sports complex had been the indoor tennis facility, but a change of direction brought the nearly dormant non-profit back.

Almost two years ago, the OISC was displaced from their last facility, and it took some time to acquire a new location.

Oskaloosa News recently caught up with leadership from the Oskaloosa Indoor Sports Club about the facility and what has been done to transform it from a tennis facility to a place where athletes can train year-round, for nearly any outdoor sport, indoors.

Not only do students, but other teams, like travel teams, get an early jump on the season or keep their skills honed all year round on the newly installed turf.

Mark Willett said the choice was to install turf because, in Oskaloosa, indoor turf isn’t available until now. “So as you see, we have 13,000 square feet of turf”, which also includes 18 tons of rubber pellets.

That new turf and batting cages and golf inserts are a start to the upgrades planned for the coming future. Of course, the next phase of improvements will depend upon membership numbers, but there are plans to continue improvements if all goes well.

Improvements to help add protection to windows, HVAC systems, lights, and insulation are on the near horizon.

Those improvements are fueled by memberships and volunteers from the community. Those volunteers helped unload the turf and the rubber pellets and eventually helped install it.

Plans are underway as well to install new high-impact lighting. “We just need the funding for it,” says Laura North.

Plans for full netting of the inside of the facility to protect the building itself are also planned. But, for right now, they encourage members to try not to kick the ball into sensitive building areas.

“We want all of our members to be volunteers and policing it and keeping it nice, and making sure it’s used properly,” says North.

So, the group is focusing on growing its membership numbers to help fuel those improvements.

North added that they continue to receive feedback from members and coaches about improvements and more into the future.

The donation of the building by Clow Value in Oskaloosa was a reason this facility is now available to local athletes. “This is just an excellent opportunity to provide a facility to Oskaloosa and the surrounding areas to provide a service that has a significant gap in this area,” said Willett. “So when there was an opportunity to fill that void, it was a pretty easy decision for us to make.”

You can find out more about memberships and volunteer opportunities by visiting OISC on the Facebook Page HERE or find their membership packet and apparel HERE.

Posted by on Jan 9 2022. Filed under Local News, Local Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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