Stoughton’s new Collins Field groundbreaking May 10

The Stoughton Area School District hosted a groundbreaking ceremony at Stoughton High School's Collins Field on Monday, May 9. From left are: Justin Johnson (CG Schmidt), Ron Jake (Stoughton Trailers), Kate Ahlgren (SASD), Andie Alexander (SASD), Erica Pickett (SASD), Bob Wahlin (Stoughton Trailers), Steve Lyons (Stoughton Sports Boosters), Brian Bierman (representative for the Anderson family) and Luke Butz (SASD)

The shovels have hit the dirt, and now it’s construction season through the summer for the much-anticipated renovation of Stoughton High School’s Collins Field to an artificial turf surface.

The Stoughton Area School District and construction management firm CG Schmidt hosted a groundbreaking event for SASD staff, school board and community members Monday, May 9 to mark the start of the project and the introduction of the new Anderson Complex.

The groundbreaking event began with an introduction by district athletics and activities director Andie Alexander, followed by speakers Steve Lyons (president of Stoughton Sports Boosters) and Bob Wahlin (president and CEO of Stoughton Trailers).

The new Anderson Complex project was made possible due to the financial support of SHS alumni Keith and Tammy Anderson, Stoughton Trailers, and numerous Stoughton community businesses, families and individuals..

A natural grass surface limits opportunities for use and requires extreme maintenance, according to a SASD news release, while the new artificial turf field will allow for football, soccer, lacrosse, and other field sports, as well as marching bands, physical education classes, tournament hosting and community enjoyment.

The school had a goal that every SHS soccer player, lacrosse player, track and field athlete, football player, cheerleader, dance team member and band member gets to play or perform on the field. According to the news release, the artificial turf is also expected to provide for an additional 30-40 events per year. These additional events will bring additional revenue to the community and its businesses.

Alexander said the day “marks a turning point for the Collins Field that most have come to know and love over the last 70-plus years.”

“We’re excited for the opportunities that the turf field will bring to the school and the community,” she said. “Its use will no longer be limited to football and soccer, but rather other field sports, activity groups, the marching band, hosting tournaments as well as community use.”

The track will be closed to the community until the construction is complete in September.

Contact reporter Scott De Laruelle

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