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The Salt Lake Scene

Salt Lake Indoor Bliss

Most people aren't aware that Salt Lake Valley's recreational soccer participation is one of the highest in the country. The Utah Soccer Association (www.utahsoccer.org) runs a great summer-league program. However, in the winter time, the same soccer enthusiasts look to indoor facilities in the valley to get their kicks.

I have played at least two full sessions at more than four different indoor venues. So here's an insider's critique at some of the options one has in the Salt Lake Valley for indoor soccer fun.

SALT LAKE VENUES

Murray - Let's Play Soccer Facilityletsplaysaltlake
4926 South Box Elder
Murray, Utah 84107
p, 801-262-8988 e, saltlake@letsplaysoccer.com

This venue has one court (field). It's central location attracts a busy schedule and some of Salt Lake area's top soccer players. There are teams of all ages and different league levels. The spectator space is limited, but I've rarely seen it overcrowded. There are two negatives at this venue: (1) the building is very old and heat is not contained well--spectators, bring a blanket, and (2) the turf is the worst of all the venues I've played at--although all other indoor arenas have made the switch to field turf (artificial grass with rubber pellets for dampening and grip), this venue refuses to make the switch. They stay with the hard turf laid over concrete--very hard on the knees and ankles for an old guy like me.

Woods Cross - Let's Play Soccer Facilityletsplaywoodscross1
2250 South 850 West
Woods Cross, Utah 84087
p, 801-299-0909 e, utah@letsplaysoccer.com


This venue gets the Most-Improved award in my mind. Two years ago, this arena featured a very small main court and an even smaller kiddie court. They made some major changes for the better a while back by eliminating the kiddie court all together and expanding the main court. They also upgraded the turf from hard turf to field turf. They added a nice spectator area with maximum visibility and increased the size of the goals. Let's Play scored on the upgrade and changed this arena from the worst in the valley, to one of the best. They may have done so because they felt the pressure of some competition close by to the West...

Woods Cross - Ultimate Indoorultimateindoor-wx
1877 West 2425 South
Woods Cross, UT 84087
p, (801) 298-3118


Ultimate Indoor offers one of the newest facilities in the Salt Lake area. There are two courts--one large and one medium in size--both with field turf in great condition. Two criticisms I have about this arena is the goals are a little smaller than I like and the walls are a big low. Teams that play here are VERY competitive. If your team does not have a lot of years playing, you should probably sign up for a B league.

VENUES OUTSIDE OF SALT LAKE VALLEY


Kaysville - SportsPlexsportsplex-kaysville1



SportsPlex
1188 Sportsplex Drive
Kaysville UT 84037 p, 801-593-5855

This is the best complex I've played at. Two extra large courts. Excellent field turf. Very high walls. And the organization and competition are outstanding. They have an online resource for knowing top scorers, point leaders, individual stats, etc. The team that wins championship each round has the option to take a t-shirt or get $50 off the next session.

It's nice to know that in such a soccer mecca, like Salt Lake, fanatics don't have to wait until summer to play. Although a true soccer player should be out running distance and sprints during the winter, indoor play helps with footwork and passing. And it does it in the warmth and comfort that only a roof over head can offer during the cold months. Check out any of these facilities for a good time in the winter--that is, if skiing the greatest snow on Earth isn't enough for your active lifestyle.