City Council to seek commitment, confirmation from Minnesota Twins

Published 5:26 pm Friday, February 9, 2018

Over the past month, the Elizabethton City Council has heard nothing from the Minnesota Twins.

And the Council is ready to know where the Twins’ stand in regards to renovation at Joe O’Brien Field.

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The Elizabethton City Council voted unanimously during Thursday’s meeting to send a letter to the organization giving the Twins’ officials until Feb. 28 to say whether or not they will help with the cost of renovations at Joe O’Brien Field.

The last communication between the City Council and the Twins was a month ago when City Mayor Curt Alexander spoke with Twins President and Chief Executive Dave St. Peter about the city’s appeal for the Twins to work with the city in paying for upgrades at Joe O’Brien Field.

“It has been four weeks, and what we are really looking is a commitment,” said Alexander after Thursday’s meeting. “You are either in financially with us, or you are not. If you are out that is fine, we just need to know that.”

The motion to send the memorandum was preceded by the city council approving a contract extension with the Minnesota Twins, keeping the Elizabethton Twins at Joe O’Brien another year.

Also during Thursday’s meeting, the City Council voted 6-1, with councilman Wes Fraizer voting no, to have a committee begin contract negotiations with Hampton Golf, a golf course management firm out of Jacksonville, Florida. The City Council is looking at the possibility of having the management firm take over operations of the Elizabethton Golf Course. Hampton Golf is at the top of a list containing four other firms. Any contract created by the committee and the firm will be brought before the City Council for approval at a future meeting.

Other Business

The Council voted 5-2, with Kim Birchfield and Sam Shipley voting no, to close a part of Kendrick Avenue. The closure will be apart of renovations by Carter County Bank to its branch located near Kendrick Avenue. Elizabethton’s Patrick Little owns rental property on Kendrick and asked the City Council to vote against the closure, saying that it will hinder access to city service vehicles and EMS vehicles. Little said he was also concerned that the shutdown would negatively impact the desirability of his rental property.

The City Council voted to approve various events such as the second annual BBQ, Brews and Blues at Cover Bridge Park (Sept. 15), The Cat’s Pajamas Mountain Bike Race at the Hampton watershed (Apr. 8), and the Milligan College Cyclone Classic in downtown Elizabethton (Mar. 25).