My name is Chloe Martin, and I am a sophomore at Westfield High School. I have been an advocate for the turf fields for a long time and the vote is coming up. The residents of Westfield should understand how much the athletes suffer from only having one turf field to use. I hope I am able to change people’s minds or encourage people to vote to support the current and future athletes of our town.
This season’s field hockey schedule called for 12 away games and only four home games. Countless hours were spent on the bus traveling to towns that were over an hour away, and we were often left trying to find rides to the games due to a shortage of bus drivers.After a long day, we would get back on the bus and arrive home no earlier than 7 or 8 p.m., only then starting our hours of homework.
Not only was this the reality for the field hockey team, but also boys and girls soccer and football. Girls soccer had only three home games. Boys soccer and football both had four home games this season.
Kehler Stadium, the one turf field designated for the use of high school sports teams, can not fit all seven teams in one day. This often leads to a small amount of home games and having nowhere to practice. There was a week when the field hockey team had three away games and went for two runs because the field was not available.
I have been working with various sports organizations including the Boosters, PAL flag football and Westfield field hockey along many coaches and our athletic director, Sandy Mamary. I have gathered student athletes to help sell signs in support of the turf fields around town as well as pass out flyers. It has been absolutely amazing to see how much interest the students have in fighting for something they are truly passionate about. All the student-athletes come together and are united at these events to support their fellow athletes and hope for a brighter future with more turf fields.
It is crazy to think that I have been going to Town Council and Board of Education meetings for the past year. Athletes, parents, and coaches in Westfield have been showing their support and fighting for their turf fields for much longer than a year. It is time to put our differences aside and come together as a town. Please take a step back and think for a moment. Think about the future athletes of Westfield. Think about the time you will have to spend driving your kid to other towns for Westfield practices. Think about how much the athletes of Westfield will benefit from the additional turf fields.
If anyone is still unsure of how they will vote, I ask that you vote yes. Vote yes for our kids, for more home games, and for more practice facilities. Vote yes for the future of Westfield High School and all the amazing athletic teams that get to call Westfield their home.
Chloe Martin Westfield