By MICHELLE BROOKS
RUSSELLVILLE - Tractor pulls and horse shows require a special place.
The Russellville Lions Club's 17-acre property fills the bill.
The civic organization's site also accommodates the Outlaw Baseball League, fire department trainings and a safe place to release community fireworks events.
This season the club hopes to renovate its clubhouse kitchen to create a space for community or family functions. They are also considering further uses for the arena, such as horse-related lessons and figure-eight racing.
In addition to the significant upkeep the club's property requires, the members also are involved in fundraising for a college scholarship program, hosting the annual Christmas parade and supporting international Lions Club projects.
Already the club has ensured plenty of parking and updated wiring at its property.
The Outlaw Baseball League subleases the two ball fields. But the league also has partnered to update the fields including lighting, fencing, a pitcher's mound and sponsor signs.
"That's the biggest project we've done for the community for awhile," said Secretary Darryl Strope.
In the planning stages, the kitchen renovations could include building an outdoor fire pit, where a whole hog or dozens of hot dogs and hamburgers could be cooked.
They intend to update to a three-bay sink, new wiring and replace the heating and cooling equipment.
They'd also like to get stadium seating.
"We have a lot going on in the next five years," said President Ward Garrison.
Once the kitchen project is complete, Garrison hopes the club can concentrate on other community projects.
The club's fundraising efforts are minimal, so they will rely on grants and future partnerships to fulfill their improvements.
In addition to funding, the club needs more members, Garrison said. The more bodies there are to divide the work, the faster projects can be completed.
Those interested in joining the Russellville Lions Club may call 782-0144.