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HomeSportsNeed for More Parks, Fields and Open Space in Larchmont, Mamaroneck Discussed

Need for More Parks, Fields and Open Space in Larchmont, Mamaroneck Discussed

Hommocks Field

The current explosion in outdoor activity and local sports has brought new pressures on the local municipal park systems and open spaces.  More teams want to play on existing fields more often. Three advocates of parks, fields and open spaces spoke at a recent meeting of the Larchmont Summit.

Ben Foster, Director of Coaching for the Larchmont-Mamaroneck Football Club (LMFC) and Founder and Owner of FosterSoc reports that “soccer is virtually maxed out,” there being too few fields and playing surfaces to accommodate the demand for team play. Foster’s work with the Mamaroneck Avenue School, which includes scholarships to provide interested students access to soccer instruction, has fueled interest in soccer and an eagerness of many young people, boys and girls, to play.

Friends of Larchmont Parks is an all-volunteer not-for-profit organization working with the Village of Larchmont to “strategically plan and fundraise for projects which will better our parks for all,”  according to Co-President Deborah Maher. Among their list of recent local park projects are Constitution Park and Turtle Park. Friends of Larchmont Parks’ latest project is the upgrade of Willow Park, which is currently in its final stages, and includes enhanced children’s play equipment and a new basketball court.

Fields for Kids is also driven by the acute shortage of field space, according to Board Member Todd Norman, prompting their continuing search for new fields for sports and the funds to make them suitable for regular play throughout the season. Using their private/public partnership model, Fields for Kids was instrumental in the creation of Flint Park’s Alma Memorial Field in 2008 and the upgrade of Memorial Field at Mamaroneck High School to turf in 2011. Among the projects that demand his current attention are the returfing and slight lengthening of Alma in Flint Park and plans for transforming the grass field behind Mamaroneck Town Center to a turf field, both targeted for a summer 2024 start date.

Responding to concerns raised by audience members regarding the use of artificial turf vs. natural grass fields, all three panelists acknowledged that while artificial turf allows for much heavier usage of fields, it is far from perfect.  They agreed that the choice of field turf is a balancing act and decisions about the material for field turf are not made lightly.

For more information about the work of these organizations :

 

 

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