The Ocean Township Spartan Booster Club is still $44,000 short on its contribution to help pay for an artificial turf field at the high school and it is looking for additional community support.
The school district is attempting to raise $730,000 for the project, which will replace the current grass field with an artificial turf field.
The Booster Club pledged to raise $216,000, which already includes a $100,000 donation from a private citizen. The Board of Education will apply $515,000 from its capital reserve fund.
So far the club has raised $171,000 but more money is needed to reach the club’s target amount.
“It think it’s important that people donate because a new field is long overdue and this has become a community project. I think it will bring some pride back to Ocean Township’s Big Red football team program and bring all sports together to play on one field. I think everybody needs to come together because it’s everybody’s field,” Booster Club President Gail Matarazzo said.
Donations can be sent to the Booster Club at P.O. Box 428, Oakhurst, NJ 07755
Matarazzo said the club will be collecting money at the upcoming Italian American Festival held Aug. 7 through 11 and plans call for additional fundraisers in the near future.
“Even though ground has been broken for the field, money is still needed. People are under the impression that since the project is started that money is no longer needed and that is not the case,” she said.
She urges residents to stop by the football field and see the progress.
“We should be ready for the first home football game this fall!” she said.
School officials said artificial turf fields are becoming very common- very popular with schools and colleges and, in this case, it allows for multiple sports to use the field. The primary use is for football but it can also be lined for soccer, lacrosse and field hockey. Baseball and softball will not be played on the new field.
The school district may also be able to create some revenue from the field by renting it out for other sporting events.