Lavallette borough officials are finalizing plans to partner with the school district to improve Chandler Field, the baseball field complex situated between Route 35 and Baltimore Avenue.
“We did meet with the Board of Ed, and it looks like we’re going to do it in two phases,” said Borough Administrator John Bennett, at a council meeting held Monday night, referring to new dugouts and a new infield.
“We’re also going to go ahead and try to apply for a Green Acres improvement grant which would try to get the money for the outfield,” he said, which would come in the form of a low-interest loan of 2 percent.
The upgrades to the field will be completed after a number of other projects are checked off the borough’s list, he said. The borough is also pursuing maintenance at the pickleball courts.
“After we finish the tennis courts and some other continual maintenance, the next project will be this field,” said Bennett. “We want to bring it up to the standards we have at the recreation area.”
Chandler Field is, notably, one of the most popular areas for members of the “Goose Patrol” to bring their four-legged friends for some exercise. In Lavallette, residents can apply for a limited number of permits to allow dogs onto the field in order to spread their scent with the hope of scaring away Canada geese which had been soiling the field. The program has been hailed as a success, though over the years it has morphed into a recreational activity as much as a goose-prevention measure. Officials are considering a plan to designate a certain area of the Chandler Field complex as a permanent dog run that can be used even when activities are ongoing within the park.
“The thought was, when the children were in there playing, you could go into this certain area which will be fenced-in where the dogs can run unleashed,” said Councilwoman Anita Zalom.
Bennett said the designated dog run fencing would not be paid for by taxpayers, but those who bring their dogs to the park.
“We’re getting the prices right now, and we’ve been working with the Goose Patrol people who will be the source of the funding,” he said.