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Welcome Back, Torrington Track!

POSTED April 22, 2015
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

Torrington throwing standout, Kendra Covington throws the javelin during the Raiders first home meet in nearly two years on Tuesday afternoon at the Robert H Frost Complex.

TORRINGTON: There wasn’t much that wasn’t perfect about the first regular season track meet held at the Robert H. Frost on Tuesday afternoon.

The complex, despite a great deal of rain the day before and Tuesday morning, drained as well as expected on the track and for most of the field events.

Sure, the softball field looked like it could of held a fishing derby considering how well it kept every bit of rain on the infield but that’s because Ed Arum and the Turf Committee has not been allowed to re-do it yet.

If they had, it would look and play as well as the Robert H. Frost did as the Raiders took care of Wilby in their first meet since 2013 when the old track simply ran out of gas and had to be fixed.

The track, with its give built in, felt great and even though it was an early season race into a stiff wind at times, the runners flew around a track without hitting a pothole at any point.

No dodging torn away pieces of track or watching out for drain covers as the athletes made their way from event to event across the turf field.

The main players in making sure this gift was wrapped correctly before presented were all on hand Tuesday.

Co-Chairs Mario Longobucco and Ed Arum walked the area on Tuesday morning like the proud parents they are and were back in the afternoon to soak in the sun and watch as these team enjoyed the fruits of their labor.

State Representative Michelle Cook, who secured the nearly three million dollars needed make the dream come true, was on hand with her husband Chris to take in the actions of their kids, Billy and Ashlynn who are both expecting big years on their new playground.

That’s what this “Field of Dreams” has become and it’s what the organizers wanted when they set down plans nearly eight years ago.

A playground where members of the community can come and play any number of sports or just take a run or walk on the now giving track surface.

At any point during the time the complex is open to the public (it is not accessible while school is in session), you will see all sorts of activities. Baseball, football, Frisbee or soccer.

It was what was wanted and it has turned out amazingly well.

Raider Athletic Director Mike McKenna could not have been happier with what he saw on Tuesday and his grin stretched from ear to ear.

 “It’s great,” Athletic Director Mike McKenna said, “Two years ago the kids were running on a pot-hole filled track. Now they have this great facility and I’m really looking forward to them having fun on here.”

McKenna is as much of a Raider as anyone could be and took great pride in being part of this project.

 “It’s my town,” McKenna said, “I grew up here. It’s beautiful, I love it. Walking around here this morning with members of the Turf Committee and the builders, just seeing how fantastic this facility is was terrific.”

A year ago, we were stumbling around rock piles and ditches. Today, a pure thing of beauty was in full use and it was grand.

“It’s so exciting to see our kids on the track,” State Representative Michelle Cook said, “To see them using the whole entire thing and seeing the joy in the kid’s faces as they lay there on the turf, enjoying it makes it all worthwhile.”

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