The Covington Miracle League Field is a step closer to becoming reality.
Miracle League of Newton County Consultant Tamara Richardson announced recently that groundbreaking on the complex for special needs athletes will occur on Aug. 21 at 5:30 p.m.
The Miracle League baseball field, along with another turf fields and a special needs playground will begin construction on Sept. 1 by the Georgia Department of Corrections.
The complex will encompass a 225-square foot artificial turf field and a 5,200-square foot playground. The playground will be the first in Newton County for children with mental or mobility disabilities.
The Miracle League Field, turf field and playground will go where the existing football fields are.
The Department of Corrections is waiting to begin construction until Sept. 1 due to the Dixie League World Series, which will be played at City Pond Park beginning Aug. 4.
Once the construction begins, it is expected to be around a year before teams can use the field.
"(The Department of Corrections) told us to plan on an 8-12 month construction program," Richardson said. "They've indicated it might go faster than that. Things can take a little longer using inmate labor but the cost savings far outweigh having traditional labor."
The Covington City Council agreed to lend Newton County Miracle Field $1.5 million back in Jan. after the Newton County Board of Commissioners didn't bond out projects from the 2011 SPLOST vote.
The Miracle League is based out of Rockdale, which currently has a field of its own.
Newton County Recreation Commission Director Tommy Hailey began efforts to bring a field to the county after meeting National Program Director Stephanie Davis at a National Parks and Recreation conference in Seattle about four years ago.
Newton County has more than 2,700 children with mental and physical disabilities in the community. The Miracle League Field will be available for teams of 8-12 players and will begin play in the fall of 2013.