In the fall of 2017, as part of a $1.5-million capital campaign, Landmark College installed a state-of-the-art 8,200 sq-ft synthetic turf field featuring Shaw’s environmentally-friendly infill product, GeoFill. While the moisture retention of the product was a major selling point for the college, few could predict the almost record-breaking winter that would put the turf field to the test.
The late-winter storms that hit the area provided a first good test of the water-absorbent quality of the turf installed on Charles Drake Field. Between March 14 - 25, almost a half-foot of snow melted, leaving the surface dry enough for a local high school field hockey team to play a scrimmage game. This would not have been possible on a natural grass turf field.
Increased playability was a major reason the school chose a synthetic turf field. “Landmark College opted for synthetic turf to extend playability later into the fall and earlier in the spring,” said Kyle Skrocki, director of facilities at Landmark College. “The new turf has enabled teams to have more practice time outdoors and created more opportunities for extracurricular activities.”
The choice to go with Shaw Sports Turf was rooted in price and a superior, more environmentally-friendly product. “One of the selling points for the Shaw Sports Turf infill material is that it promises to hold 7-8 times its weight in moisture,” said Skrocki. “The GeoFill turf was advertised as having superior moisture-absorbency, making it a good fit for snow and rain we experience in the northeast. The natural, environmentally friendly-infill material also aligns with the College’s values.”
The installation of Drake Field, a project that also included a field house with locker rooms, restrooms and a concession area, has allowed the school to offer an environmentally-friendly playing surface for its athletes and community to be enjoyed almost year-round.
Drake Field features Shaw’s Legion System with GeoFill. Shaw’s Legion turf system is a combination of high-performance monofilament fibers and a durable slit film fiber. The slit film fiber is a workhorse which will handle the workload, while the monofilament provides a more resilient surface that enhances performance characteristics.
Made from completely natural materials that are environmentally friendly, GeoFill is comprised mainly of coconut husks and fibers, which are a rapidly-renewable resource. It provides the natural footing and support of a natural field without the mess of dirt and instability of other infill systems. An added benefit of GeoFill is that it is inherently cooler than other synthetic playing surfaces. GeoFill fields have been seen to be as much as 40 degrees cooler than other synthetic fields.
The new turf field has also opened up opportunities for the surrounding community. “We are also making the field available to area schools and groups, which has provided an income opportunity through rentals as well as greater marketing exposure for the college,” said Skrocki.
Being game-ready from the start of soccer season in the fall through lacrosse games into late spring has meant increased playability for the school and its community.
For more information, visit www.shawsportsturf.com.