NORTH SACRAMENTO — Parents and community leaders are upset a North Sacramento indoor soccer field and gymnasium is being forced out so the owners can apply for a marijuana growing license.
Olympus Sports Coliseum is located on Pell Drive and has been the winter training home of countless high school and senior sports for the past four years.
Polito Barragan began working at Olympus Sports Colosseum as a kids soccer trainer. It’s a service that grew quickly in the neighborhood and he’s now seeing about 30 kids per week.
“Every kid by word of mouth, ‘Hey, there’s a new trainer, there’s a new trainer.’ And every kid that came brought a new friend,” he told FOX40.
With an indoor field, Olympus was ideal in the winter months.
“I just fell in love with this town and this facility,” Barragan said. “So, I was like, ‘Yeah, this is where I want to be forever, I guess.’ But now seeing what we’re going through now, forever can end soon.”
“We got 12 days notice. ‘You’re out, let’s go,'” said Kristine Spencer, the owner of Olympus Sports Coliseum.
Spencer explained she and her husband don’t own the building.
They were never actually told their old landlord was applying for a conditional use permit. Instead, Spencer said she found out at a community meeting.
“We were sitting there going through the list, and it was, ‘Oh, I recognize that address.’ ‘And then I’m like, ‘Oh, that’s my address,'” Spencer said.
Now, she’s moving out the fields, batting cages, basketball court and, eventually, the soccer field. The facilities and equipment are used by dozens of community, senior and school teams.
“They won’t have any place to go,” Spencer said.
However, the new owners of the building said they were told by the previous owner Olympus’ lease was expiring in February.
In a statement to FOX40, the owners said:
“We regret that Olympus Sports Coliseum, a for-profit business, has been unable or unwilling to find alternative space upon expiration of their five-year lease this past February. As members of this community, we have made repeated good-faith attempts to provide relocation assistance, including offering extensions to the lease on multiple occasions, assistance raising additional funds and offering the current building for (sale) to them at market value. After receiving no response since February 2019, we are left with no choice but to exercise our legal rights as property owners.”
Meanwhile, Barragan says it’s the kids he feels the worst for, as some may not be able to get to their new facility if and when they find a location.
“We don’t want to be in this area because of drugs and because of what we’re going to be showing the youth,” he said. “‘Hey, here, drive by this marijuana building but you’re going to get to ours.’ I don’t think that’s right.”
The president of the Robla Park Community Association told FOX40 she is working to help Olympus find a new home.