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Concession hall debuts this season

The First Hernando Youth Soccer Club has a new facility.

Published November 4, 2006


SPRING HILL - Today, as it kicks off its 20th season, the First Hernando Youth Soccer Club is starting a new era.

The green fields that have played host to hundreds of kids will actually feel more like a permanent home.

Selling hot dogs and sodas from a cramped little trailer will be a thing of the past. And when visitors ask to use the restroom, they'll no longer be pointed to a line of portable toilets near the parking lot. A new 4,500 square-foot concession facility will house all those needs and more.

"It's going to make a world of difference," said league registrar Dawn DeInnocentiis. "People may actually want to volunteer to work in the concession stand."

With a current roster of more than 1,000 registered players in recreation and competitive leagues, the First Hernando Youth Soccer Club has grown from humble beginnings to become one of the region's most successful leagues.

Despite its strong membership, the lack of permanent restrooms, storage facilities and adequate concession space limited the scope of the organization's ability to raise money.

"Not having those things makes it difficult to attract larger soccer tournaments," said league commissioner George Angeliadis. "As a result, we miss out on a lot of revenue."

According to Angeliadis, regional soccer tournaments attract upward of 150 soccer teams over the course of a weekend.

"You're talking about thousands of dollars in concessions, not to mention the revenue it would bring to area businesses," said Angeliadis.

After years of operating at various parks around the county, the First Hernando Youth Soccer Club partnered with Hernando County to build six permanent fields at Anderson Snow Park sports complex in 2000.

The club agreed to provide $100,000 for field construction, and secured in-kind donations to cover the remainder of the costs, estimated at $250,000. In addition, the league pays approximately $35,000 to the county each year for field upkeep and electricity.

The $200,000 concession building, which is located adjacent to the fields will also house meeting rooms and offices of coaches and league officials and will provide storage space for field equipment and supplies.

"People are really going to love it," said DeInnocentiis. "Just having nice restrooms will be huge improvement."

Logan Neill can be reached at 848-1435 or

[Last modified November 4, 2006, 07:48:38]

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