Turf Construction Nears Completion

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Turf Construction Nears Completion

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After years of petitioning, fighting, and building, turf has finally been put down at the Polo Grounds outside of Bernardsville Middle School and Bedwell Elementary.

The building of the turf caps off what has seemingly been an endless battle, filled with council meetings, votes, speeches, and everything that allows the Polo Grounds to be turfed.

Sophomore James Vandenherik said, “I remember how I was using the Polo fields a lot in middle school the town had a vote [for turf] and it got turned down.”

The vote he is referring took place in 2013, when residents of the town, as well as council members voted against having turf put down.

Vandenherik added, “I was pretty disappointed then, but now I’m happy for the kids that will be playing there. The kids and athletes deserve a better field than the joke of a field that was previously there, and now they have one.”

The turf was funded by an extremely generous grant on $1,000,000 from the recreational grants program of Somerset County. The grant will certainly go to a great cause, as athletes from all over Somerset Hills will be able to take full advantage for all the field has to offer

Polo’s new turf facility won’t just be for Pop Warner football, however, as the field is truly multi-purpose. Sports that can be played on the turf include softball, boys and girls lacrosse, soccer, field hockey, and football.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the newly turfed Polo is the brand new all-turf baseball field. As the field’s backstop and dugouts beautifully rise from the ground, the baseball field is impossible to miss upon one’s entry to the facility. While the baseball field dugouts and infield are separate from the main turf field, the outfield does merge with it, so baseball games will be unable to take place at the same time as other sports on the main field.

Athletes at Bernards High School are certainly ecstatic about the turf as six of the school’s sports teams use the Polo Grounds for practice or game use.

Sophomore Girls Soccer player Annabel Carifa said, “I’m so excited about the new turf for the Polo Grounds! Our team will get great use out of the new facilities.”  

The actual field won’t be the only breathtaking aspect of the new facility, as the beautiful area surrounding the field will turn the Polo Grounds into a top-notch park. Although many of these features are still in construction, the plans are laid out, and the field’s surroundings are on pace to be spectacular as well.

According to the Somerset County website, the facilities entrance will be made of beautiful stone, and visitors will have the baseball field to their left, and the multi-purpose field straight ahead of them. In addition to beautiful stone pathways, the entire area surrounding the field is made of synthetic turf. This means not just players, but also fans and spectators will be able to enjoy the new turf.

Although the turf has been completed at the Polo Grounds, construction is still underway, and therefore the field will remain closed until further notice. Renovations still need to be completed on the parking lot and areas around the Polo Grounds. Although minor work still needs to be done, the bulk of the construction has been completed and the facility is in pristine condition.

Turf at the Polo Grounds is bound to be one of the greatest additions to Bernardsville in recent memory, and athletes and fans alike are sure to reap its benefits.

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