New Turf Field Begins to Take Shape at EMU

Harrisonburg, VA – Representatives of A-Turf, the company selected to lay the new artificial playing surface at Eastern Mennonite University, began laying rolls of the new turf on Wednesday as the new field began to take shape. EMU athletic department representatives, along with university faculty, staff, and students, removed the old turf in April. Workers then patched the original base and expanded the base for a larger area to be covered by the new turf surface. The A-turf crew began laying the first rolls of turf on Wednesday morning, beginning with the center line of the field. The turf pieces were designed and cut off-campus and then packaged and shipped to Harrisonburg to be installed. Work is expected to continue on laying the turf through Friday, May 12. Once laid, the crew will cut in all of the necessary lines and dimensions for field hockey and soccer use and will install the EMU block lettering from the new athletics logo at midfield, which is expected to take another five to six days. After that, the final step will be to add the sand and rubber mix to cushion the base, which should take a few days. The entire process is expected to be completed by the end of May if weather and other conditions cooperate. EMU Athletic Director Dave King commented on the progress by saying, “I am very pleased with the progress. While we are about three days behind our original, optimistic schedule, things are going quite smoothly.” Good Services, Maust Enterprises, A-Turf, Physical Plant staff and volunteers have all been working together efficiently to get the job done. This type of collaboration will result in considerable savings on the project. The new playing surface will replace the previous Astroturf-style surface that was utilized for the last 17 years. The field will be home to the EMU field hockey program and occasionally for other varsity athletic competition and practices. It will also host intramural sports and the summer adult soccer league, among other activities. As for the old surface, King noted that it will go to good use. Another exciting aspect to this project is the use of the old turf by local high schools and youth sports organizations. He went on to say, “All of the rolls of old carpet have been claimed for dugouts, batting cages and youth golf facilities by local groups. This has saved us money, helped the environment, and provided improved facilities for youth.”

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