The boys lacrosse team runs onto the newly completed synthetic turf to play its first ever game. (Photos by Jennifer Corr)

Glen Cove City School District Celebrates New Turf

School officials thank the community for bond vote

March 19 was a big day for Glen Cove.
On a chilly day just before the beginning of spring, the marching band, boys and girls lacrosse teams, local and school officials, and other community members gathered by Glen Cove High School’s new synthetic turf for a ribbon cutting to celebrate its completion.
Glen Cove High School Principal Allen Hudson III remembered playing on a much different field filled with divots when he was a student.
“As a proud graduate from Glen Cove High School, it fills my heart with immense gratitude and joy to stand before you today as the principal of Glen Cove High School,” Hudson III, who is a member of the class of 1991, said. “Today marks a monumental moment in our school’s 116-year history as we gather to celebrate the ribbon-cutting ceremony for our brand new turf field.”
The new turf field, Hudson III added, is not just a patch of green.
“It’s a symbol of opportunity, growth and excellence,” Hudson III said. “It is a place where our Big Red GC Knights will create memories, forge friendships and strive for greatness.”
After the ribbon cutting, the Glen Cove boys lacrosse team, which Hudson III called “truly fortunate beneficiaries,” played the turf’s first game.
Director of Athletics, Health and Physical Education Kimberly Riso thanked Glen Cove City Councilwoman Danielle Fugazy Scagliola and the Glen Cove Education Foundation for the donation of the new scoreboard, as well as Mike Messin and Tom Decarlo for the renovation of the press box.
“Together we have shown there is nothing we can’t achieve when we all come together,” Riso said. “Go Bid Red!”
The project, funded by a bond, was $2,237,173, and it replaced the previous turf with a synthetic turf. The original track was kept.
The synthetic turf was among the projects funded by the Bond Referendum the community voted in favor of in December 2022.
As previously reported by the Glen Cove Oyster Bay Record Pilot, the 2022 Bond, valued at $30,552,621, passed 1,179 to 853.
The bond will take three years to complete, and the projects will be financed over 15 years to align with State Aid reimbursement, a value of approximately $10 million. The tax impact, approximately $0.25 per $1,000 of accessed value, is being phased over a two- to three-year period. For example, a home valued at $800,000 would see an extra $240 in taxes a year ($20 a month)
With the monies the district would receive from the bond, new classroom and office hallway doors meeting state code, equipped with state-of-the-art automatic locking security door hardware, would be invested in across the district.
At Glen Cove High School, the district will invest in reconstructing all student science rooms and labs to meet curriculum demands. And, the student cafeteria, kitchen and bathroom will receive renovations to meet Americans with Disability Act (ADA) requirements.
The Courtyard Window Curtainwall will be replaced, increasing energy efficiency and health. And the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioner (HVAC) system will also be replaced, as well as the student corridor lockers.
In addition to the turf, the tennis and basketball courts and tennis building will be seeing improvements. Students will also get a new handball court.
Other projects include replacing the tennis parking lot curb and walkway, the main parking lot asphalt, curb, and sidewalk, installing smoke doors in the interior stairwell, electrical repairs, admin asphalt, curb, and sidewalk replacement, replacing the public address system, and replacing corridor and exterior doors.
It took three times for the district to get the bond passed by the community, as many people were concerned about paying more taxes.
During the ribbon cutting, officials expressed gratitude towards the community for voting in favor of these upgrades that will enhance students’ education and safety.
“The journey to this moment was very hard fought and hard won,” said Board of Education President Maria Elena Venuto. “But through perseverance, we now stand before this field, which exemplifies our unity and determination as a community.”
Venuto explained that exterior work, such as high school tennis courts and extensions to Deasy and Landing elementary schools, which are currently under progress, are being prioritized to minimize disruptions towards students during the school year. But, over the summer, interior projects like the high school science lab, cafeteria and bathrooms will begin.
Board of Education Vice President Angela Raimo also thanked the administration and staff for their dedication.
“You have been the backbone of the bond projects, navigating the complexities of planning and construction, and ensuring every detail is well managed,” Raimo said during the ribbon cutting. “Your tireless efforts have laid the groundwork for what will be a source of pride and joy for our school and community.”
Raimo added that the enthusiasm and anticipation for the new field from the students has been the fuel that has kept district officials going.
“I think it’s amazing they were able to work so hard to get this together, and the fact that the community supported our children, to me, makes so much sense, because they’re our most valuable asset,” said Nassau County Legislator Delia DeRiggi-Whitton, a 1986 Glen Cove High School graduate. “I think that when other teams pull up and see such a beautiful field, they’ll know the pride we have in our children.”
Glen Cove City School District Superintendent Dr. Maria L. Rianna said she was thrilled with the new field.
“The kids once came off the field in white uniforms that turned black from the mud,” Dr. Rianna said. “This is really a great way to begin a new chapter in Glen Cove’s life, and the kids deserve this.”
Glen Cove Mayor Pam Panzenbeck, a 1971 graduate of Glen Cove High School, was amazed at how quickly the field was finished.
“But the beautiful thing is that it’s going to look like this always,” Panzenbeck said, later adding “The school board did a great job in getting this accomplished, plus all the other projects they have in the hopper.”

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