Our mission statement will be to create the best competitive showcase softball tournament in Iowa. We will accomplish this by getting high quality teams from across the Midwest and combine that with college coaches from all levels across our region. Once play starts, run a first class tourney that helps build the great game of softball. Make the tournament competitive so coaches can get a true evaluation of how players perform in that environment.
Prairie Ridge 6 field Complex is perfect for showcase softball. The Quad Field setup, will allow coaches, players, and fans to observe action on all fields with ease. The Facility is without a doubt the most weather friendly complex in the state.
The recently added lights, add a world class touch to this new and exciting holiday spectacle.
Your Prairie Ridge Complex Map.
Prairie Ridge Sports Complex
Ankeny is an active, sports-minded community that supports many leisure activities. In the early 90’s a group lobbied for a youth sports complex. Their concept was good but the timing was off. The trigger for the project was the need for the Little League program to vacate its existing facilities. In 1998 a bond issue was held to vote on a tax increase to build the complex. The vote was 60/40 against the tax increase. The City Council offered another financing option. The City would put up $3 million of hotel/motel tax dollars if $1.5 million could be raised privately. The Ankeny community stepped up, raising The $1.5 million was raised in nine months.
Prairie Ridge Foundation Formed
A 501C(3) Foundation was formed to handle the private fundraising. The Board of Directors is made up of representatives from the five youth sports organizations involved in the project. The groups are Little League, Club Soccer, Girls Softball, Junior Football and Parks & Recreation (city). These groups made a pledge of $27/participant/year for five years. The cumulative total equals $385,000.00. The source of funds is as follows: user fees, $385,000; donations, $665,000; county, $400,000; grants, $50,000.
Letting of the Project
Bids were let in February 2000. Construction of the $4.5 million project began in April and finished in October 2000. The project was built to provide fields for Ankeny youth in local competitive league play and to attract sports tourism to our community. The facility consists of 15 baseball fields, 11 soccer fields, 6 softball fields, 3 football fields, 3 concession stands, a maintenance building and off-season storage for all equipment. Six of the soccer fields are irrigated but the water system is sized for complete irrigation. The parking lots have the capacity for 1200 cars. There are elements of a city park within the complex, which include trails, play equipment, two ponds for fishing and open space.
Complex Operations and Management
The City is currently developing operation agreements with each of the groups. The complex opened for play in April of 2002. The City employs a full-time Complex Manager who will handle day-to-day maintenance, contracts involving mowing and weed control/fertilization. The complex has 90 acres of turf. Most 18-hole golf courses are of similar size. Two-thirds of the complex is made up of the field of play and one-third is common area/park. Each of the sports groups will be asked to share in the cost of operation/maintenance for the field of play area.
Role of the City
The Park Board will have the responsibility of oversight. The Board will serve as arbitrators between the sports groups, foundation and the city. With the exception of a rental by someone outside the Foundation, the sports groups will have control of all revenue steams (concessions, parking, sponsorship, entry fees, gate admissions and merchandise). The purpose of this arrangement is to enable the sports groups to generate revenue to offset operation and maintenance costs.
Our biggest challenge in 2001 was keeping the public off the playing fields. It looked so good it was hard to resist the temptation to go out and use it. The complex will have other phases of development that will include additional irrigation, lighting, trails, spectator seating, and a multi-purpose, four-season building.
Location & Directions
The Prairie Ridge Sports Complex is located at 1510 NW Ash Dr.
Coming from I-35 go west on 1st street until you reach Ash Drive. Go north (right) on Ash Drive. The complex will be on your left hand side. Parking lots can be entered from the east and north.