Will Leque, 10, of Riverside, shoots baskets at Ludlam Avenue Park. Photo: Maria Piedrabuena

Ludlum Avenue Park will see some of its facilities renovated this month as a result of a petition by local community advocates.

“This is a great thing happening for everybody in the community ,” said Ron Fisher, president of the Flanders, Riverside and Northampton Community Association.

The site located at the intersection of Ludlum Avenue and Old Quogue Road in Riverside will gain new bleachers, re-netting of existing soccer goal post frames and new lines drawn for the two existing baseball fields, turning it into one multi-purpose field that will make it easier for visitors to play soccer as well as baseball said town officials.

The existing tennis court will be turned into a basketball court, with the addition of two extra nets bringing the total number of basketball nets to eight.

“Right now we feel is underutilized, we want people to get more active and involved,” Riverside Rediscovered community liaison Siris Barrios said.

Town of Southampton Parks and Recreation Director Kristen Doulos said that they plan to have the soccer field done before the weekend of May 19 -21 when the Flanders Food Truck Festival will take place.

“This will be the perfect event to reintroduce kids to the park. It’s a wonderful space. There are bathrooms and a playground too,” Fisher said.

Doulos explained that funding for the bleachers and soccer field upgrades, about $2,600, was paid through the parks maintenance budget. New nets and other court repairs and adjustments for the new basketball courts had a cost of about $7,500 and were funded through the park reserve funds after Councilwoman Christine Preston Scalera put forth a resolution before the town board.

FRNCA, in partnership with Riverside Rediscovered— which is also overseeing multiple other redevelopment plans for Riverside — conducted online and door-to-door surveys last year asking the community about the kind of improvements they would like to see for the area. The results revealed that, in addition to wanting more quality children’s programming, the community was not using the park because it didn’t have the amenities people wanted. Specifically, Barrios and Fisher said, the survey mentioned people wanted to see a soccer field and another basketball court.

“When I was young that park was used all the time,” said Fisher. “The town ran free programs five days a week in the summer. It was also the nicest baseball field when the Flanders Little League played there, but went that went away, people stopped using the park,” he said.

“My favorite sports are soccer and basketball. It will be great to have a real field and everything.” -Will Leque,10, Riverside

Ten-year-old Will Leque, a Riverside resident who goes to the park frequently explained that right now he and his friends don’t really play baseball and he said he was very excited to see the changes.

“My favorite sports are soccer and basketball. It will be great to have a real field and everything ,” he said.

The upgrades are just the beginning of a series of plans that will make Ludlum Avenue Park the main hub for local children’s activities, starting with the building of a brand-new Children’s Museum of The East End satellite location there next year that will feature children’s programming and after-school activities.

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