DAPHNE, Ala. (WKRG) — A $1.6 million dollar grant will let Daphne re-turf these baseball fields.

Daphne Mayor Robin LeJeune believes new turf will bring more opportunities for events at the Daphne Sports Complex.

“So this really expands our ability to host more tournaments, it takes the pressure off our staff for working the weekends and the amount of overtime that they do and the amount of work they have to do to get the fields ready, ” said LeJeune.

Mayor LeJeune said that the fields are usually closed the whole month of July, to give the fields a rest, but with the new turf fields, they will be able to be open all year round.

That money comes from the Economic Development Administration. The Economic Development Administration noticed that restaurant and hotel businesses were down during tournament season due to weather cancellations. With the new turf fields, games can go on if it is raining.

More tournaments mean more people visiting local businesses. But that’s not all the sports development coming to Daphne. Officials said locals can look forward to new pickleball courts.

“It’s just showing Daphne moving forward, yes it’s a new park, and yeah we could say hey we don’t need to put more money into that park, it’s brand new, let’s wait, but when these opportunities come up for Daphne to continue to move forward, and you have this opportunity where they’re going to give you 1.7 million to do that, that’s what we are about, that’s what Daphne’s about is moving forward and looking ahead”  Mayor LeJeune said.

The fields will be ready for tournaments and regular play next summer.