2012-10-03 / Front Page

Haldane Fields Project Goes Primetime

MSG Varsity Visits Haldane to Feature Upcoming Referendum
By Stephen Schweikhart

Ryan Dahlia being interviewed by MSG Varsity on Thursday. 
Stephen Schweikhart Ryan Dahlia being interviewed by MSG Varsity on Thursday. Stephen Schweikhart The Haldane fields project has now become a regional news story, as fresh on the heals of the Haldane Board of Education’s 5-0 vote to approve a November 13 referendum to determine the fate of the fields project, an MSG Varsity film crew visited the campus.

This past Thursday, Yvette Sedacca, Regional Manager of MSG Varsity’s High School Outreach program, and cameraman Rishi Gandhi toured the Haldane campus and interviewed a slew of faculty, coaches and students to feature the topic that will be emotionally debated by Philipstown’s residents over the next six weeks.

Aside from interviews with athletes Kelly Vahos, Ryan Dahlia, Peter Close, Allie Monteleone, Nicole Pidala and Cali Schweikhart, the MSG crew spoke with Haldane Superintendent Dr. Mark Villanti, Elementary and Middle School Assistant Principal Julia Sniffen, Elementary and Middle School Principal Brent Harrington, and a number of school’s coaches.

Each presented their thoughts as to how the school and the community would benefit from the proposed field and facility improvements.

The student athletes rattled off a variety of current shortcomings that would be eliminated should the public give the referendum a thumbs up. The laundry list included the decrepit locker room conditions (which are overcrowded and prone to theft), the existing sub standard field conditions, and the lack of a true home field on campus (an obstacle faced by both of the school’s soccer teams). Faculty and coaches cited the need for a facility that would not be at the mercy of the region’s fickle weather, a safe surface for the school’s physical education program, as well as the desire to have an athletic complex that would be a source of pride for the school and the community.

“MSG Varsity was thrilled to be at Haldane to film and hear the high school students, administration, faculty, coaches and town officials,” said Yvette Sedacca, MSG Varsity High School Partnership Manager. “They exude the passion in making their school a better place to learn.”

The interviews were filmed on a beautiful fall day with elementary school physical education classes playing in the background and the football field being lined for this past weekend’s game against Bronxville. Unfortunately, less than 24 hours later, mother nature reminded everyone of exactly why a turf field is being pursued, as heavy rains put the field out of commission, and the girls varsity soccer game against Beacon was canceled because the field at St. Basil’s was an unplayable quagmire.

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