Indoor sports now in Northwest

Andrew J. Ansolabehere
November 19, 2008
Filed under Features

As the days get shorter and the air gets colder, playing a pickup game at the park becomes a little more difficult. For those who aren’t diehard players and would prefer to be guarded from the elements, The Vision Zone, located near Hagemen Road and Fruitvale Avenue, is the place to be.
Vision Zone, an indoor sports facility, has only been in business since April but has already had a large outpouring of support from the community. Tony Fox, president and adult sports coordinator, believes that once players use the facility, they realize how nice it can be to be able to play on a sheltered, well lit field. Pickup games can be played at Vision Zone for a small fee of five dollars an hour.
Currently, Vision Zone is sanctioned by the United States Indoor Soccer Association as an official facility. Volleyball and indoor soccer are the two main sports played at Vision Zone.
Starting in December, a futsal league will begin playing at the facility. Futsal, although very similar to soccer, has one distinct difference. Players use a much heavier ball that does not bounce, making passing a more key point of the game.
“Players come into contact with the ball 250 percent more playing futsal than in soccer,” says Fox. “A team really has to work on moving the ball down the field.”
One project that Fox is especially excited about is starting a dodgeball league by early 2009. He has already found multiple teams interested in joining. These teams currently play in parks in the northwest and would like to move to an indoors facility. Fox also plans on getting Vision Zone sanctioned by the International Dodgeball Federation.
Teams of all ages would compete in games at Vision Zone during the season. At the end of the season, Fox said there would be post-season playoffs for the top four teams.
Vision Zone had planned to hold the Dodge the Badge tournament, a two day local law enforcement dodgeball competition. Teams would play for a portion of the proceeds to donate to their favorite charity.
However, after two months of planning, the teams who had voiced interest ended up not registering for the event. “We had a few teams from the Sheriffs, Fire Department, and few other agencies saying they were very interested,” said Fox, “but nobody signed up.”

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