The Middletown Press reported that Governor Rell announced a $150,000 grant to Middletown Youth Soccer, for "renovations" to soccer fields at Smith Park, on Country Club Road. I spoke with Frank Marchese, Vice President of MYS, about their plans for the money. Marchese told me that the money will be used for additions to 4 new fields across the street from Smith Park.
These fields are on city-owned land which MYS leases, under a 99-year lease agreement with the city. Field construction was originally to be financed by a $2.335M bond authorization, but this was rejected by the voters in a referendum in February, 2007. This left the field construction and maintenance the sole responsibility of MYS. With limited financial resources, work on the fields by DeRita Construction has proceeded slowly, but two of the fields have been in use since last fall.
Marchese said that money from the state will be used to install lighting on one of the fields, to build a concession stand and bleachers, to put fencing around the complex, and to purchase goals for two new fields, on which the grass is nearly ready for play.
Marchese said that MYS has no plans to rent the fields to leagues outside of Middletown, they will be used by the travel teams from Middletown and by the recreational soccer league.