Carl Smith Sports Complex In Tulsa Closed Indefinitely Due To Storm Damage

Mayor G.T. Bynum said more than 100 Tulsa City Parks have significant damage and the Carl Smith Sports Complex in East Tulsa is the worst. News On 6's Ashlyn Brothers told us the parks department said it is simply not safe to use.

Monday, June 26th 2023, 5:33 pm



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Hundreds of softball players in Tulsa are torn up over the city closing their leagues' fields indefinitely because of the storms.

Mayor G.T. Bynum said more than 100 Tulsa City Parks have significant damage, and Carl Smith Sports Complex in East Tulsa is one of the worst.

The parks department said it's simply not safe to use.

Donnie Freeman understands Tulsa was hit hard and the city has a lot on its plate. His team just wants permission to come out and clean up the complex themselves.

A couple of weeks into summer softball season and every team is taking Ls.

Donnie Freeman said last weekend's storms showed Carl Smith Sports Complex no mercy.

"This was the place to be. In the 90s, you couldn't find an open field in this park," Freeman.

Freeman said he grew up at this 'diamond in the rough' watching his late father play for the team 'No Mercy'.

"This place was always a link for me to him. And the thought of never being able to be out here and play on the same fields that he did is pretty gut wrenching," said Freeman. "This has been our home for 30 plus years in my life and 40 plus for other people."

The city closed the complex indefinitely last week and said it'll take a lot longer to fix than other parks before it's safe again.

"For right now, while we assess going about how we fix it back up and how long that’s gonna take," said Mayor Bynum.

Freeman believes the park has been neglected over the last 10 years and said if the city had done a better job with up-keep, more of it might have withstood the storms.

He said they started a petition to keep the complex open. They are willing to put on fundraising tournaments and do the dirty work.

"We've got people from every industry willing to come out and fix fences and remove torn up roofs and hang tarps up if we need to over dugouts," said Freeman.

The Tulsa Amateur Softball Association believes the bottom half of the ballpark is playable right now and said it's separated from the top half by a couple hundred yards.

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