June 2015 Update: Concrete has been laid on the volley ball court, poles and nets bought and erected, and kids are enthusiastically learning how to play the game.Road Safety signs have been installed at both ends of the road. A coffee morning quiz at Greggs on June 23rd, raised more money to go towards the cost of the concrete.
You can see the progress of the project in pictures in the FlickrGallery
May 3rd update: The new sports area in Ag Nikolaos is proving very popular. Many families are already using the new facility, that not so long ago, was little more than a dump for old vehicles. Now, thanks to hard work, enthusiasm and donations from many people, the community has a place which adults and children can share and enjoy. The volleyball net has arrived and the volleyball poles have been ordered.
Irini Kelepouri has been working with the children and their parents to create a program** for the area, that will ensure the best use of the space.The area will be in use 9:00 to 21:00, but everyone will be expected to keep the area clean and not disturb the neighbours.
CAUTION - The road outside is a popular place for children to play, and activity on the sports area is likely to attract spectators, so drivers, PLEASE BE PARTICULARLY CAREFUL driving round that corner into Ag Nikolaos, especially in the early evening. The municipality will soon be providing warning notices to alert drivers .
** The program is hanging on the fence of the football court. It includes the program of play, the rules, and a warning to the kids to be careful when crossing the street. TIMETABLE FOR SPORTS AREA
April 10th update: Extract from a Message from Stuart:- '.....the astroturf is now fully laid out and stretched and ready for glueing. As soon as we get continuous sunny weather, the pieces will be glued together.There are volunteers on standby to help complete this task. Yesterday Irini received a anonymous donation that means Goal Post Nets and a Volley Ball Net can be ordered and installed. Youngsters are already playing football and are very excited. The installation of the nets means that the football becomes 'proper' and the Volley Ball Net will mean that other children can play on the area designated to be the Basket Ball Court. We are all hopeful for a 'proper' launch / 5-a-side match in the coming weeks......' but.....
MORE MONEY WILL BE NEEDED in the coming months. If you wish to make a first/another donation either e-mail Stuart to arrange for collection, or put it in a sealed envelope addressed to Irini Kelepouri and give to Freda at Gregg's Plateia.
March 9th: Thank you from Irini on behalf of the Ag Nikolaos Committee, the parents and children:- 'Thank you for everything you are doing for us! I would like to thank all the Quiz players as well as everyone who supports our effort. Your contribution is very important. The children are so excited to get their own football and basketball areas.The amount of money that was collected on March 6th, was 530 €. This a good start for what we have to do to finish the football area and also for the basketball area.'
February 21st: After a few dry days the astroturf laying could begin. It is hoped that the Quiz/Articulate event on March 6th will raise enough money to cover the cost of the special glue for the astroturf
February 3rd: Photos of the project to date:-
The initial clearing of the site was a major job, but many hands, even young ones, helped to make light work. Also, hundreds of euros of expense have been saved by the generous donation of labour, equipment and supplies. In addition to the funds raised last August, donations include goal posts donated by Vassilis Koloveas, 10 m3 of gravel and the machinery donated by Valavanis, levelling work donated by Ilias Koumoundouros, 8 hours of volunteer work from 15 Albanian men, and astroturf donated by AEM(The local football team).
Now the end of the project is in sight! All that is needed is some special glue for the astroturf and the weather for fixing it.
removing rubbish & old cars ................................................. clearing & levelling .................................... astroturf waiting to be laid
More pictures of the work to date in the Flickr gallery
January 28th: UPDATE from Stuart : All in all, Christmas, New Year and the recent torrential rain have slowed down the project, but with the sun it will rapidly progress.
1.They have levelled the football area and laid 42 Cubic metres of gravel. When it dries out after all this rain they will use a steam roller to flatten and compress the site.
2. Metal goal posts have been delivered and are ready for installation.
3. Astro turf arrives this week for the playing surface of the football pitch. Again, when the pitch has dried and been rollered the astroturf will be fitted.
4.The back boards for the basketball pitch are expected to be delivered very soon.
November 11th: UPDATE - Irini has been discussing plans with Christina(Gaia) who has put her in contact with various groups/individuals including Hans Stamminger (Nehemiah Gateway), the COSMOS sports center and Felix Blauel, who may be able to give practical help with getting supplies/discounts for sports equipment. While she wants the sports area to be in use as soon as possible, she also wants to take the time to investigate possible help, before going ahead .
Sept 28th: As no-one offered any better suggestions at the meeting on September 18th, the Ag Nikolaos Cultural Committee have decided to go ahead with Phase 3, as originally planned.(see below) They hope the concreting will be done within the next few weeks.
Discussion about the sports field : Irini is very anxious that the funds raised (more than expected!) should be spent in the most effective way.
A message from Irini:- "Let's discuss about the football field of Agios Nikolaos
on Thursday 18th September at 7pm
at the place of the football field. Everyone is welcome to express their opinion."
Irini would particularly welcome anyone with knowledge/experience of installing/maintaining sports areas. If you have any knowledge/information you think might be useful, but are unable to attend the meeting, you can email Irini at email@example.com
August 23rd 2014 Irini is delighted with the response to the appeal for funds for the new sports area in Ag Nikolaos, which will provide a safe play space for local youngsters.
Funds raised to date:
465 Donations from local Greeks/Albanians
1684 Money raised on August 20th
(Quiz at Greggs + raffle, auction, donations)
100 Parea sti Mani
Some of the money is needed to pay for materials already used, but they will still have enough for Phase 2. There will be a meeting, probably in late September, to discuss the best way of proceeding.
Irini Kelepouri has been working with the Selenitsa(Ag Nikolaos) Cultural Assoc., to raise funds for a sports area behind the new Katerina's supermarket in Ag Nikolaos. The plan is to provide an all weather surface for a basket ball court and 5-a-side football.
Phase 1: With much help from Georgios Koukoutsis and his family & employees, and donations, the area has been levelled, the basket ball supports relocated, and a 2m high protective mesh fence has been installed along the length of the pitches.
Phase 2: The next step is to raise the 1600€ needed to concrete the basket ball area. It is hoped that the Music Quiz organised by Stuart Allan, at Greggs, combined with the auction and raffle, will raise at least 500€, and perhaps, with associated donations, August 20th with add 1000€ to the fund. Irini is collecting and keeping a record of all donations, which so far include 460€ from local Greeks and Albanians.
Freda is selling raffle tickets at Greggs, and is also collecting donations.
Phase 3: Once the surface has been concreted, funds will then be needed for the hoops and plexiglass basket ball backboards, which could mean another 900+ euros, but Irini is hoping to get some free/cheap from a school that is closing in Kalamata. Then the area will be ready to use.
They are also hoping to get some second-hand astroturf, for a better playing surface for the 5-a-side football, although even second hand, this could be another 1000€