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Chappaqua Turf Committee Makes Official Donation

CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. - The Chappaqua Turf Committee (TCTC) kick-started its planned $3 million turf project on Friday morning with a donation of $76,500 to the Chappaqua Central School District.

The check was presented to the district as a means of paying for engineering work that was carried out for the committee's recently proposed projects . Accepting the check on behalf of the district was board of education president Alyson Kiesel and Superintendent Lyn McKay.

Originally, TCTC had hoped to raise $2 million for the installation of a turf field at Horace Greeley High School, but has since expanded the scope to include bathrooms, athletic facilities, track repairs, an entrance walk way, concession stand renovations, press box renovations and new lights around the school.

"Basically what we’ve done is we’ve tried to put together a plan that helps the school district with its overall athletic complex," said TCTC President Jim Nottingham. "By going into the state with a full-fledged plan, it became possible to add all the missing pieces and qualify for some state aid. So that’s why we did it.”

Nottingham said the plans will submitted to the state within the week. To date, TCTC has raised around $500,000 and is still on track with its original goal of installing turf in the fall of 2012.

“We are close to the time frame we thought we’d be it," said Nottingham. "We don’t know how long it will be up at the state, but once the engineering is done - and it is done, that’s what this is all about - it gets submitted to the state education department.”

According to Nottingham, TCTC will now begin its larger push for donations. Instead of holding fundraising events, members will be soliciting larger contributions between $50,000 and $100,000.

TCTC will also be selling bricks for a walkway that will run from the parking lot to the field. Donors have the option of inscribing their names on the bricks.

Nottingham said he is careful not to step on the toes of other non-profit groups that raise money for the district, such as the Chappaqua School Foundation.

"We don’t want to take one of their large donors away," said Nottingham. "We want people to see this project as an independent, standalone project. A one time, one shot deal. And we think that the best way to do that is to talk to people, explain the scope and the breadth of the project."

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