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The new McCrary Park projected finish date is June 22.   Dennis Garcia / Randolph Hub

Rain, mud and McCrary Park

ASHEBORO — The projected completion date for the second phase of the McCrary Park renovation has passed with Randolph County Post 45 and Asheboro ZooKeeper officials scrambling for a plan until renovations are complete.


Asheboro Mayor David Smith said because of heavy rains early in the year, there wasn’t enough work that was completed in order for the scheduled date of late May to be reached.


City Engineer Michael Leonard said the new projected date is June 22 with grand opening ceremonies set for July 4. 


The stadium is still without bathroom facilities, power or adequate parking space.


“We are behind for various reasons, the main reason being the incredible rain we had at the beginning of the year,” Smith said. “We just couldn’t get a lot done because of the mud. The builders are over there painting and finishing the grandstands and buildings.”


The grandstands were brought in and assembled last week and the construction team continues to work on various projects around the stadium.


“I feel bad we didn’t get it done, we couldn't get it done,” Smith said. “We’ve had people over there 10 hours a day. It’s not going to be ready for a ballgame at the anticipated date we have been working for.”


Smith said a great deal of the problem is that there are so many projects and so many different people who need to get into the same small area. 


“We can’t get to where we need to be to trench and put the conduit in to pull the wire because of construction issues,” Smith said. “From the bathrooms to the grandstands to the admission gate is about half the space it used to be and everything is happening right there.”


One contractor has until June 15 to complete work and a second contractor has to the end of July to complete projects.


New turf to replace the torn-up turf near the backstop has been ordered and expected to be installed this week.


The parking lot proposes another problem.


“We can’t get the parking lot finished because every time we start, it rains,” Smith said. “If you look back at all the rain we’ve had, it’s not an excuse. We just can’t get guys over there to do what they need to do.”


Leonard said once work begins on the new parking lot, paving should take just a few days.


The ZooKeepers of the Coastal Plain League have already moved a few of their early home games as has Randolph County Post 45. Post 45’s scheduled home game last Saturday was moved to this Saturday and a mid-week game with Davidson County was still on. However, the venue had not been set.


“They are still working hard,” veteran Post 45 coach Ronnie Pugh said. “They are a heck of a lot closer this week. It won’t be this week. We’ll look at it week by week and plan accordingly.”


Post 45 played at Southwestern Randolph High School last year as Phase 1 of the stadium renovations were being completed.