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Shovels wanted at Tormenta groundbreaking
Grocery store to be revealed, as well
Tormenta logo

When Tormenta FC breaks ground Wednesday on its stadium, team president and co-owner Darin Van Tassell doesn’t want just a few selected representatives to put their ceremonial shovels into the ground — he wants more shovels than any local groundbreaking has ever seen.

Today’s 5:30 p.m. event is dubbed “B.Y.O.S.,” or “Bring Your Own Shovel.”

“This team is part of this community and we want everyone to share in our growth and our fun,” Van Tassell said.

Darin Van Tassell
Darin Van Tassell

And turning the first mounds of dirt that eventually will become the 5,300-seat Tormenta Stadium is only part one of Wednesday’s excitement. After many years of hopes and disappointments, a major grocery chain will announce its plans to build a store at the corner of Old Register Road and the bypass.

The store will act as an entrance of sorts to the stadium complex and Van Tassell acknowledges its importance.

“As much as I love soccer, more people will be excited to grocery shop at a store they have been wishing was in Statesboro for years,” Van Tassell said. “The grocery store location and popularity will only enhance everything we are doing with Tormenta, the stadium and the planned overall development.”

In fact, in addition to the stadium and grocery store, two hotels, a movie theater, restaurants, a bank and office and residential buildings are parts of an estimated $160.5 million in projected private investment in the Old Register Road development.

But with the opening game of Tormenta’s first professional season set for Friday at Erk Russell Park, the stadium groundbreaking will be the most visible aspect of today’s ceremonies.

“We’re very excited about what the stadium means for our team,” Van Tassell said. “But this is all big for our community. The stadium will be soccer-specific, but also compatible for many other events like concerts, shows. Many possibilities.”

The stadium complex will occupy the former Hackers Golf Park space north of The Clubhouse family fun center, which Van Tassell and his wife own. In addition to the stadium, the complex will include a restaurant, a craft brewery, all of the offices of Tormenta FC and team stores.

Before any of the development happens, however, the first earth must be moved at today’s 5:30 p.m. event.

“Tormenta is Statesboro’s team,” Van Tassell said. “We hope to have lots of folks with lots of shovels join us.”

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