By Melanie Petrucci, Senior Community Reporter
Shrewsbury – The community celebration of the new turf fields at Shrewsbury High School (SHS) was just about to get under way Sept. 14 when a deluge of rain descended upon the Central One Federal Credit Union Stadium.
“That’s what these were made for – the rain won’t matter,” remarked Angela Snell, director of public facilities.
Snell was just one of many town officials, school administrators, dignitaries, donors and community members gathered for an informal dedication of the David J. Adams Memorial Field at Central One Federal Credit Union Stadium.
School Superintendent Dr. Joseph Sawyer welcomed guests who gathered under a tent where a celebratory luncheon was served, while monitoring the storm.
Dignitaries included State Senator Michael Moore (D-Millbury), State Representative Hannah Kane (R-Shrewsbury), Sandy Fryc, chair of the School Committee, Selectmen Chair Maurice DePalo, Vice-chair Beth Casavant, and Selectman John Samia.
Led by the efforts of a fundraising campaign chaired by Paula and Jim Buonomo and Debra Mooney, approximately $1.85 million was raised through donations, large and small.
Mooney has extensive capital campaign experience and she said in a video presented at the dedication that she wanted to get involved for her daughters – both of whom are soccer players, having played for SHS.
Paula Buonomo added: “We were happy to get involved. I wasn’t sure that it actually was going to happen but we can all see here today that this field is amazing and so many students are going to be able to benefit.”
Legacy Circle Donors included Central One Federal Credit Union; Susan, Daniel and Sarah Adams, in memory of David J. Adams; Al’s oil Service & the Flynn family; and Shrewsbury Youth Soccer. In the Hall of Fame Circle, Paula and James Buonomo, Shrewsbury Athletic Boosters and Shrewsbury Federal Credit Union were the primary donors.
Thankfully, the storm abated and attendees migrated to the David J. Adams Memorial for the informal program led by Sawyer.
“It’s an extraordinary community accomplishment … There is no doubt that this is a significant improvement to our town’s athletic and recreational facilities and will certainly leave a legacy to thousands of students and youth athletes in the coming years,” Sawyer stated.
“It’s a strong statement of community and what a community can do when it comes together to meet an ambitious and worthy goal and it’s a manifestation of the pride that Shrewsbury takes in making sure that we provide a first-class environment in which our young people can strive for success.”
Sawyer recognized the work of the Capital Campaign Committee and its chairs (the Buonomos and Mooney) as well as many of the donors, members of the Adams family who were also present and Kathleen Keohane and Michelle Biscotti, co-coordinators, development & volunteers for Shrewsbury Public School who were instrumental to the fundraising effort.
“It’s amazing!” noted SHS Athletic Director Jay Costa. “It will allow us to get all our athletes and student body out on the field. It really feels like a small college atmosphere…The most important thing is the sense of community pride that everyone got involved…”