The Farmers Bank Fieldhouse was officially unveiled in Lebanon Friday morning with a grand opening date of Saturday for the public.
The Farmers Bank Fieldhouse, located at 505 S. State Road 39 in Lebanon, sports 200,000 square feet under the roof, offering eight basketball courts, twelve pickleball courts, one turf field and pitching and hitting tunnels for the community to enjoy. According to the developers, basketball, pickleball, volleyball, soccer, football, baseball and softball tournaments and leagues are already placing their faith in The Farmers Bank Fieldhouse as an outstanding option in their rotation. The fieldhouse is already looking to implement new activities for visitors, such as four golf simulators.
As of Friday at 10:30 a.m., the ribbon has officially been cut for the fieldhouse, and a volleyball tournament is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 10. According to Mason Hankins, President of the facility, the volleyball tournament will be hosted from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. with an open house scheduled from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. for the public. The open house will cost $10 to play pickleball, basketball and to play on the turf and explore the fieldhouse.
Hankins also highlighted the introduction of a basketball program for Kindergarten through senior year that provides training, games and league tournaments that will be available at the fieldhouse. The program, GoTime Basketball, has over 100 kids signed up for the experience already.
While the fieldhouse will cost patrons to utilize the facility, numerous activities will be available for the community to enjoy free of cost throughout the year.
“We have open gyms, and we do some community outreach events as well that will be free,” Hankins said. “We do it in all our facilities. They’re not currently planned, but we will have those. Not everything will be a charge, but most things will be.”
According to Hankins, the fieldhouse does require visitors to provide their own equipment, but a pro shop will be available for patrons to purchase equipment for use.
Community development was on the minds of many of the visitors for the ribbon cutting for The Farmers Bank Fieldhouse Friday morning as Card & Associates explained the impact that other fieldhouses across the state have had on its community, such as Westfield’s Pacers Athletic Center.
“I was there at the outset of that, and I’ve watched it impact thousands and thousands of families and kids that have come through the building,” Hankins said. “It’s not only impacted families close to the heart, but we’ve also got surrounding businesses around us that were not there five years ago. The area has exploded. Not that we had everything to do with that, but I think we were a large contributor. I’d like to see the same thing happen here in Lebanon, and I think that it will.”
Lebanon Mayor Matt Gentry acted as a leading member of the project as it began to develop, and he focused his sights on the youth engagement and community development aspects that the fieldhouse will provide the Lebanon community well into the future.
“I think it’s going to be a great facility for youth going forward,” Gentry said. “The youth sports market is such a huge and growing market in America, and it’s awesome that kids in Lebanon will now have a facility like this to now be able to hone their skills and play all the sports that they love, but then also for the rest of the community too–the pickleball courts, there will be golf simulators as part of this as well too. Really, it’s catering to a wide group of people, and I think it’s going to be really exciting to see what all comes later with the restaurants, hotels and the shopping options that people want to see in communities.”
Gentry commented that the partnership between the numerous businesses, organizations and the city government was outstanding, and he expressed his excitement for the project as it nears its opening weekend.
“As Mayor, this was kind of a concept I had actually before my first run for mayor back in 2015, so it’s really exciting for me to see this idea now become a reality,” Gentry said. “I’m very excited for what this will do for Lebanon and this area of the state just from a sports tourism standpoint. I’m very excited to see the all the great things that will happen because of this.”
Chris Cook, The Farmers Bank President & CEO, echoed Gentry’s statements regarding the partnership, stating that working with Card & Associates to bring the fieldhouse to fruition was a rewarding way to serve the community in a different capacity apart from financial services.
“We’re really excited about partnering with Card & Associates to provide this facility to the Lebanon community and even Central Indiana,” Cook said. “We’ve worked with Andy Card and Card & Associates for a little while and feel like they’re a good partner in terms of believing communities are important and how we can serve the community, which is also some of the same values The Farmers Bank holds.”
The Farmers Bank opened its doors in Lebanon over two decades ago and has been serving Clinton County residents as well as residents from surrounding counties for 148 years after being founded in Clinton County. Cook commented that The Farmers Bank is proud to continue its service to the Lebanon community through its financial services as well as the activities provided at the fieldhouse.
“Being in Lebanon for over two decades, this is a way to cement our desire to be in Lebanon and Boone County and our ability to give back for the two decades we’ve been here and for all the customers and community members who have trusted us with their financial services,” Cook said. “It allows us to give back to the community and hopefully, for those who don’t know The Farmers Bank, it brings a little bit of light to who we are and what we’re all about.”
Jennifer Nevitt, Bel Canto Asset Growth Fund CEO, was born and raised in Indiana with a passion for supporting expansions and projects in her home state. Nevitt represents the Leonard Family Trust and was a driving factor in developing a paired project with the fieldhouse–250 cottages within walking distance of the fieldhouse.
“I met Andy Card, and as we were speaking, I said, ‘Andy, I have an investor that I think would love to invest in the fieldhouse, and furthermore, we’re an apartment developer, and so where you’re finding these terrific fieldhouse sites, we would love the opportunity to add approximately 250 apartment homes,’” Nevitt said. “I represent the Leonard Family Trust, and I’m also very, very blessed to be an investor in the fieldhouse myself.”
Nevitt expressed that her ties to the area and The Farmers Bank allowed her to utilize her connections to help bring the project to fruition through the aid of The Farmers Bank.
“This area is where my parents got their mortgage payments in the ‘70s from Hamilton County, and we contacted them and said we’d love to know if you’d loan us the money to invest in the land, they participated, and we don’t have those banking relationships everywhere,” Nevitt said. “I just want to give a big shoutout to Lebanon and small town living. We’ve embraced it, and it’s been amazing.”
The cottages will celebrate an opening on May 1 with pricings ranging from $1,379 per month for the smaller cottages to just over $2,000 for the 3-bedroom cottages.
The Farmers Bank Fieldhouse will be open to the public on Saturday, Feb. 10 from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Entry will cost patrons $10 for the use of the facility during the allotted time frame at 505 S. State Road 39 in Lebanon.