Athletic Edge gives Beaufort County sports a home

DAVID CUCCHIARA | DAILY NEWS

DAVID CUCCHIARA | DAILY NEWS

 

By DAVID CUCCHIARA

Washington Daily News

 

For decades, Beaufort County, a mecca for high school sports, has been without a state-of-the-art indoor training facility able to house softball, soccer and other sports. Until now.

On May 8, Athletic Edge Sports and Fitness Center opened half of its 21,500 square foot, two-floor facility to the public, giving coaches, trainers and teams in the county a new home.

“Our goal was to try to have a full athletic facility to better Beaufort County athletics,” said owner and Washington native Brad Horton. “We weren’t trying to go with a one-sided, one-sport or even two-sport deal. We try to incorporate any sport we can and give the parents somewhere to go as well. If the kids are out here at volleyball practice, the parents can come in here to work out.”

The facility is located at the corner of 5th and Berry Street, the former address of Electrical Services Limited Inc., which closed its doors over two years ago. After acquiring the old warehouse, Horton spent the last three months installing turf, batting cages and even a climbing rope. While only half of the facility is complete, trainers and teams have already taken advantage of the amenities.

The Pam Pack girls soccer team, currently powering its way through the state tournament bracket, became the first squad to grace the synthetic green of Athletic Edge earlier this month.

Horton, who plans on having the facility fully operational by the end of July, has contracted personal trainers for baseball, softball, volleyball, soccer, speed and agility, weight lifting and more.

The building itself consists of an indoor soccer field, two practice volleyball courts and one full game volleyball court and multiple batting cages with two pitching machines (one for softball, one for baseball), both with the ability to throw five to six different pitches.

Upon completion, it will house a gym facility, full weight room, aerobics room and men and women’s locker rooms. The weight room and locker rooms will be 24-hour facilities, accessed via a keycard security system. Conference rooms and party rooms will also be available to members.

Packages are available for recreation and high school teams to rent the indoor field, while Athletic Edge also offers flat rates to just rent the soccer area, batting cages and volleyball courts.

Horton is currently accepting sign-ups for an indoor volleyball league and hopes to have an indoor soccer league organized by the end of the summer.

“I grew up in Washington,” Horton said. “I coach two travel softball teams and have kind of always enjoyed coaching rec ball, coaching the kids. I’ve coached baseball, softball, basketball, volleyball – a little bit of everything. We have a lot of kids going to Greenville to train and our travel teams had nowhere to go. Now they do.”

For a limited time, memberships start at $35 a month for individuals age 14 and up, a rate that will last for a year if you sign up before August 1. For two, it’s $45 a month and for three people, $70.