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STC Newsroom: STC News Releases

The Cotting School Wins Athletic Field Category in STC’s 2012 Search for the Real Field of Dreams

Tuesday, November 13, 2012  
Posted by: Terrie Ward, Synthetic Turf Council
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LEXINGTON, MA – For over 100 years, The Cotting School in Lexington, Massachusetts has provided students with disabilities a robust curriculum that met most of their needs except for the chance to participate in outdoor activities. The lack of an accessible outdoor field presented problems for many of the students, particularly those who use wheelchairs and walkers. Overcoming many obstacles, now the students have a brand new synthetic turf field – a field that is now being hailed the Grand Prize Winner of the Search for the Real Field of Dreams. The national contest, conducted by the Synthetic Turf Council (STC), searched the country for the school with the most compelling story behind its synthetic turf field.

In 2009, The Cotting School unveiled its field for an all-student soccer game involving teams that mixed ages and abilities. For many of these students, it was the first time in their lives that they could play or engage in outdoor sports.

"The opportunity to create a synthetic playing field on our campus is a dream come true for our students,” stated David Manzo, President, The Cotting School. "Children who use wheelchairs or walkers often are left on the sidelines for sports due to difficulties of moving on grass playing fields. Our field is used for gym classes, after school activities, and weekend league play. It gives students with physical challenges the opportunity to participate, just like their typically developing peers. The cheers at our Saturday morning Challenger Little League games can be heard across our campus and the smiles of the students and their families can be seen for miles around!"

With the new synthetic turf field, The Cotting spirit is evident in all areas of the schools program, from classroom activities and therapies to after school programs and athletics. The field has literally leveled the playing field for all of the students and promoted health and wellness through exercise and outdoor activity.

Other Real Field of Dreams winners include Top Winner Piqua High School in Piqua, OH, Athenia Steel Recreation in Clifton, NJ. The National Finalist winners included Hermleigh High School in Hermleigh, TX and Hattie Larlham Doggie Day Care & Boarding in North Canton, OH.

About the Synthetic Turf Council

Based in Atlanta, the Synthetic Turf Council was founded in 2003 to promote the industry and to assist buyers and end users with the selection, use and maintenance of synthetic turf systems in sports field, golf, municipal parks, airports, landscape and residential applications. The organization is also a resource for current, credible, and independent research on the safety and environmental impact of synthetic turf. Membership includes builders, landscape architects, testing labs, maintenance providers, manufacturers, suppliers, installation contractors, infill material suppliers and other specialty service companies. For more information, visit

Our Mission

To serve as the global forum to promote, develop, grow and advocate for the synthetic turf industry.

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