Lamar sees expanded summer recreation

By Samantha Lyles, Staff Writer,

At their June 11 regular meeting, members of Lamar Town Council received an update on activities and plans from Chris Weaver, director of Lamar Area Recreation for the Darlington County Parks and Recreation Department.

Weaver said that the Dixie Youth Baseball program had 134 kids this year, which is a slight increase over the previous season when about 125 kids played in the league. He noted that the county rec department is building a new concession stand and restrooms at the Dixie Youth fields.

“That’s something that we’ve needed for a while, and hopefully we can get more kids out there to play,” said Weaver. “We are planning on doing tournaments out there in the fall when the traveling baseball and softball teams come into town.”

Once the concessions and restrooms are completed, Lamar Rec will begin hosting a monthly movie night at the fields using the county’s inflatable movie projection screen. Weaver said the movie night schedule should be firmed up once temperatures begin to cool off, perhaps toward the end of October.

He also spoke about a football clinic for kids in grades 1 through 8, conducted by Lamar High School football coach Corey Fountain. An offensive skills clinic will be held July 9 and a defensive clinic on July 10. The program will last from noon until 2 p.m. with a free lunch provided at Spaulding Middle School’s cafeteria.

Free Gym Days will be offered this summer beginning on June 18. The Spaulding Middle School gym will be open for free play on Mondays and Tuesdays from noon until 2 p.m., and the Lamar Elementary Gym will be open for free play on Fridays from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Weaver said a Fellowship of Christian Athletes softball camp will be held this summer, possibly in the first two weeks of August. He said a similar camp last year drew over 60 kids from as far away as Greenville and Charleston.

Mayor Darnell McPherson asked about the possibility of other offerings, such as chess lessons and tournaments, and Weaver said space is a concern at present. His offices are located in the former Lamar Magistrate’s office, and there is little room to use for group activities. Weaver did say they are investigating whether they could start a small yoga class in the Lamar Rec common room.

To learn more about these and other programs offered in the Lamar area, contact Darlington County Parks and Recreation at 843-398-4700.

Desiree Johnson spoke to Council regarding the cheerleading camp her daughter hosts at Spaulding Middle School. About 50 girls age 5 to 12 enrolled in this year’s camp and learned cheers, dances, etiquette, and made arts and crafts projects. The camp included a sleepover at the gym, with security provided by the Lamar Police Department.

Also at this meeting, former Town Council member Mike Lloyd voiced concerns over the growth of grass and weeds in the downtown area. Mayor McPherson explained that the town employee who oversees these duties has been plagued with health problems recently. She added that the town does not receive as much inmate labor help from the Prison Farm as in previous years, which has made progress on grass cutting especially slow.

Author: Rachel Howell

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