Soccer field at tree farm will honor McGrath
When the fun and games finally kick off at the old Mount Sopris Tree Farm this week they will honor the late Nick McGrath.
McGrath was a longtime Aspen attorney who lived in Basalt and worked tirelessly on kids’ athletic endeavors in the midvalley. He worked to ensure that soccer fields would be included in the development plan for the tree farm in El Jebel.
McGrath died unexpectedly of a heart attack on Aug. 16, 2002. He was 62 years old.
Now that the first soccer field at Crown Mountain Park in El Jebel is about to open, the organizers want to give credit where credit is due by naming the facility after McGrath.
“Nick was kind of in at the ground floor as far as the planning goes,” said Mark Fuller, interim director of the Crown Mountain Park and Recreation District.
The dedication of the field will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 30, at the Crown Mountain Park site immediately west of the Eagle County Community Building in El Jebel. Light refreshments will be served. The dedication will take place in between the first two soccer games to be held on the new field.
The games will be part of the valley’s Women’s Adult League. The first game, between La Cocina and Glenwood, is set for 5:30 p.m. The second game, between Basalt and Glenwood Springs, will follow the field dedication.
Fittingly enough, McGrath’s daughter, Molly, will take part in the game after the dedication.
When planning for the tree farm bogged down in politics during the middle and late 1990s, McGrath kept lobbying for facilities for kids. He frequently noted his own kids would be grown up before any facilities would be built but he wanted other kids to enjoy them.
Molly McGrath is now a college student but at least she will get a chance to play on the field that her dad helped turn into reality.
The public is invited to attend the soccer games and dedication ceremony.
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Andrew Huntsman and Ralph Smalley were chosen by the seniors to give the class address during Basalt High School’s graduation ceremony on Saturday. This had the two BHS teachers questioning the legitimacy of those diplomas they were about to hand out.