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A possible $350,000 over a 10-year period is heading to one of the top youth soccer complexes in the region.

Medical Facilities Corporation (MFC) has announced that it is donating $175,000 to the Dakota Fields Sports Complex "Dreams to Reality" fundraising campaign, with another five-year, $175,000 option.

The announcement came Thursday evening at the Vertex restaurant, hosted by Liv Hospitality.

Medical Facilities Corporation is part owner of Black Hills Surgical Hospital and BHSH has sports medicine program that includes Black Hills Orthopedic and Spine Center, ProMotion Physical Therapy, The Rehab Doctors and Physio Performance.

"MFC's donation to Dakota Fields Sports Complex is the most recent example of MFC's desire to give back to Rapid City by providing funding so the youth of Rapid City and other uses have the benefit of a premier soccer venue," said MFC  President and CEO Rob Horrar. "MFC also recently contributed generously with BHSH to the construction of the new community Health Center of the Black Hills, allowing for necessary medical services to the most vulnerable members of our community.

"Giving back helps communities grow and thrive, and thanks to the efforts of Roger Tellinghuisen, Donnie Patton, Paul Bradsky, multiple prior campaign co-chairs, city officials, mayors (past and present), city council members over the last nine years, and their commitment to youth soccer and Dakota Fields, we are able to contribute in a meaningful way."

The donation will also include naming rights to the facility.

Construction of Dakota Fields (12 full soccer fields) started in fall 2013 and was completed  in the spring of 2016. The land the complex was built on was donated by Doyle Estes. The recreation area is on Elk Vale Road, a mile and a fourth north of Interstate 90 Exit 61. 

Tellinghuisen said that Medical Facilities Cooperation's donor agreement to name the sports complex facility was voted by the Parks and Recreation board unanimously.

He said that the Dreams to Reality group has raised more than $2 million dollars to build and facilitate the complex and up until now it has not had a prime sponsor.

"Medical Facilities Corporation stepped up. It could be $350,000 total for the next 10 years if they exercise their option, which is a huge amount of money," Tellinghuisen said. "All of the money that has been raised ($2 million), has been used to support infrastructure and capital improvements at the complex, and it can't be used for operations.

"This community has to take its hat off to itself for being so generous for what it has done for this complex and what it has done for these kids of Rapid City and the region. It is amazing for the amount of use this complex gets. My hat is off to the MFC for stepping up, and this complex is going to have an official name. It is exciting."

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Caleb Arceneaux, CEO of Liv Hospitality, said that they have been talking about the soccer complex for several years, and it has finally come to fruition, and it is because the community got involved.

"On behalf of Liv Hospitality, it is an incredible facility. My sons play lacrosse, and the fields just hosted a lacrosse tournament, so I was out there. It's phenomenal," he said. "It's a first-class facility, it is a destination for tournaments. It's a destination for visitors, and obviously in my business, that is important. We're very excited to have it. We're so grateful for the generosity of the community and this major naming sponsorship. It's a game changer."

About 2,000 youth soccer players are involved in the Black Hills Rapids, while the South Dakota School of Mines men's soccer team and both the St. Thomas More boys' and girls' soccer teams practice and play at Dakota fields.

Black Hills Rapids Soccer Club president Chad Williams said they are honored to work together with the medical group.

"Sponsors such as this have made the dreams of building a Rapid City soccer complex a reality," Williams said. "In addition to the medical group, we have been blessed with many other sponsors over the years in development of the fields. The medical group's funds will be used for future expansion of the soccer complex. The Black Hills Rapids Soccer Club and it's members cannot begin to express their gratitude for this substantial donation."

Jack Kaup of Black Hills Surgical Hospital and representing MFC, told the gathering Thursday night that they have numerous individuals and trainers working on their staff working with Black Hills Rapids, as well as numerous other sports organizations and schools in the region.

"As a result with MFC being involved, they identified the need, the request and the opportunity to providing additional funding for Dakota Fields, and fortunately they elected to make another investment in our community and help make it a great place to live, a great place to visit for the young athletes and family who are at Dakota Fields," Kaup said.

"They were happy to make the contribution, but that was the easy part. Roger, Donnie and Paul and numerous individuals, mayors past and present, city council and a lot of people did the hard work of bringing this dream and vision to reality."

Along with Black Hills Rapids, Black Hills Orthopedic & Spine Center and the Black Hills Surgical Hospital Sports Medicine team provide sports medicine coverage for several local rodeos and other area athletic teams, including Rapid City Central, Rapid City Stevens, St. Thomas More, Douglas, Sturgis, Chadron State College and Justin Boots Sports Medicine Team.

"At Black Hills Orthopedic & Spine Center, we provide sports medicine coverage for a number of high school, collegiate and club teams in the region, and we are proud to provide care for the elite athletes of the Black Hills Rapids and the youth of Rapid City at the Dakota Fields Sports Complex," said Black Hills Orthopedic & Spine Center CEO Kyle L. Wiese.

"The goal of our fellowship-trained doctors and staff is always to help athletes of all ages stay healthy and safe, while maximizing their potential and volunteering specialized sports medicine coverage is one of the ways we can realize that goal."

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Sports Editor

Sports reporter for the Rapid City Journal.