New dates have been announced for the highly anticipated Inter-Collegiate 2015 games, which will be historically staged at Progress Park in the big parish of St Andrew.
Grenada’s premier sporting event will be officially held March 25 and 26 instead of March 11 and 12, according to event organizers.
Field events are scheduled for March 23 at Progress Park and the neighbouring Telescope playing field, respectively.
Chairman of the Grenada Association of Principals of Secondary Schools (GAPSS), Brother Dominic Jeremiah made the announcement during the official launch of Inter-Col 2015 at the Presentation Brothers College (PBC) in St George’s.
“Because of the limited space at Progress Park all the junior field events would take place at the SAASS ground and the rest would be at Progress Park, Bro. Jeremiah said, noting, that “March 23 would be a normal school day and “only the athletes and designated students would be allowed to participate on Day One…”
However, Bro. Jeremiah said members of the public can attend at a minimum cost of “EC$5.00 for students and EC$10.00 for adults.
He indicated that the price remains the same for admission on all three days of Inter-Col.
Organisers anticipate a highly successful event despite the many challenges given the limited facilities at the venue.
Director of Sports, Conrad Francis said contractors were expected to conduct a site visit “as early as Tuesday” this week to ensure that the park is ready for the games.
He said the park would be “sub-divided to facilitate separate entry points” and “a clear line of demarcation between students and the paying public.”
He noted, “Each zone would be self-contained with portable toilet facilities and vendors to minimise the need to move around the venue.”
Enhancements at Progress Park include the construction of “two permanent bleachers for the athletes with the sitting capacity of 1000 students each.”
According to Francis, the existing bleacher at the park can hold “about 300 to 400 athletes.”
Additionally, he said, “We are going to construct temporary bleachers on the left side of the pavilion for the general public.”
“So we are looking at seating between 800 and 1000 persons there,” Francis added, acknowledging that the seating arrangements “would not be adequate” but “sufficient at this time.”
Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Edvin Martin told reporters that a comprehensive operational plan is on the agenda giving assurance that the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) would commit all resources possible to ensure a successful execution of the games.
“This plan would be divided into two segments – a games specific operation plan and a plan to deal with the general jurisdiction in the outer perimeter of the games venue such as the Town of Grenville and other areas involving traffic,” ACP Martin explained.
He disclosed that RGPF is in the process of deciding a direction for the flow of “one-way traffic in front of the Park ” as they seek to limit congestion in the immediate outer perimeter.
He said there would most likely be “a bypass through (the village of) Forde that would run into the Paradise junction area.”
“It means therefore,” he added “that drop off points for persons wishing to attend the games would be at the Telescope junction from the Grenville end and at the Seamoon/Paradise junction just before the bridge” coming from the Sauteurs direction.
ACP Martin said parking arrangements would be available at the Telescope playing field and inside the Seamoon area where police officers would be stationed for security reasons.
The senior police officer also said that the Inter-Col Committee is working on the possibility of providing a shuttle service to and from both drop off points.
“Additionally, we will have a double rapid response mechanism for any unfortunate incident…” he told reporters.
Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Games, Bro. Jeremiah also used the opportunity to remind students and the general public of rules that must be followed for Inter-Col 2015 to be successful and incident free.
He said: “We want students and patrons to conduct themselves in a disciplined manner before during and after the games. All students must be in full school uniform, they must carry their identification cards at all times, obey the instructions of their principals and teachers, the police and other significant adults,”
“No one is permitted to come into Progress Park with alcohol, drugs or weapons, students must not tamper with any equipments at Progress Park or behave inappropriately…bus drivers and all those providing transportation must exercise due care and attention when transporting our students and members of the public ” he added.
The PBC School Principal stressed that patience is a vital element and encouraged members of the public to “demonstrate understanding given the unique circumstances of the venue.”
Inter-Col is celebrating 50 years of existence this year with title sponsorship from Scotiabank for the last 35 years.