Concerns raised about future of concessions at Bird Athletic Complex
Harry Taylor, the man who has been running the concession stand, is worried a mobile concession trailer will not be enough to serve everyone
CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - Several Chesterfield residents have reached out to 12 On Your Side about the future of concessions at Bird Athletic Complex after being told a concession stand would be taken down and replaced with a mobile concession trailer.
Harry Taylor has been running the concession stand for more than 15 years and has a passion for serving children.
“Every one of the kids that come to this field, we love them,” Taylor told NBC12. “They come to us for a lollipop. They come to us for water. We give all these kids anything they need. That’s why we’re here.”
Over a month ago, Taylor told NBC12 he started to hear about plans to take down the stand.
“I got the word that what they were going to do is tear the concession stand and the bathrooms down and just rebuild bathrooms only,” Taylor said.
After asking others, Taylor learned more details about what concessions would look like after the rebuild.
“Put a platform outside for a food truck or trailer or something,” Taylor said.
Taylor collected more than 1,400 signatures on a petition, voicing concerns that the concession trailer will not be able to serve everyone who goes out to the fields during the week.
“We have games here in the evenings and most of these fields are used constantly during the weekdays,” said Taylor. “On weekends, a lot of times we’ll have a tournament here where we’ll have two to three thousand people in the park.”
Those sentiments are shared by Wendy Logan, who believes the concession stand is necessary for families.
“This is where we have our dinner most nights,” Logan told NBC12. “If we’re here for two to three hours and people are coming directly from work, this is how the kids are getting their dinners.”
NBC12 reached out to Chesterfield County for comment on the situation. A county spokesperson sent the following statement on behalf of Chesterfield Parks and Recreation:
“Parks and Recreation has had a project in development for over a year to replace the existing restroom building, which is well beyond the end of its usable life, inadequate in number of fixtures, and out of compliance with current accessibility standards. Unfortunately, there has been some confusion created with CYSA regarding the impact this building tear-down and rebuild will have on their concession operations. The restroom enlargement will address the current deficiencies related to accessibility and adequate facilities. To meet association concession needs, the project includes a new concession pad with hookups and a fully equipped concession trailer. Parks and Recreation staff have been meeting with the current CYSA leadership to dispel any confusion and share the plans for future concession operations.”
“What I’d like to see is them renovate the bathrooms just like they talk about,” Taylor said. “Yeah, tear that building down, gut it, build those bathrooms. But, build another concession stand out front or add on to it in front, just like it is now.”
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