I recently spoke to the coach for George Westinghouse High School’s boys soccer team while they practiced at Commodore Barry Park. Like every other local coach in the area, he was ecstatic about the prospect of building a proper playing field right here. In fact, according to a NY Daily News article, Westinghouse has actually been forced to forfeit games because conditions on the grass field at Commodore Barry Park were deemed unsafe and unfit for play. In the same article, a Public School Athletic League (PSAL) official explains there are not enough fields to cover the games that need to be played. Between school teams and independent sports programs, local demand for fields is increasing, and the improperly maintained fields at Commodore Barry are all that exists. In the past, a few programs have arranged to use Brooklyn Tech’s private Charles B. Wang Field (Fulton and Clermont), only to be run off over scheduling and insurance hassles. You can click here to read about that unfortunate saga, and stay tuned for reports on Marty Markowitz’s misguided multi-million dollar lame duck appropriation to upgrade that very same, very healthy, very private Brooklyn Tech field. Because they want to right these wrongs, and give local kids a real home field at long last, coaches in our community are backing Turf the Slab.
Bob Byer, Founder and Director of Fort Greene Sports, and a community institution, is with us “1000 percent”, and stresses that many local sports need a home. Magnus Mukoro and Musa Kadiri from Young Rock Soccer, will be supporting the cause by hosting a big family-friendly Columbus Day Track and Field Day in Commodore Barry in October 14 from Noon – 4pm, so mark your calendars!
Even the folks at Brooklyn Sporting Goods, who know the local sports community perhaps better than anyone, think making Commodore Barry a flagship sports park is a “no-brainer”. We are grateful for the support we are getting from coaches, parents, and the whole community, and encourage everyone to put real pressure on incoming District 35 Councilwoman, Laurie Cumbo, and Brooklyn Borough President, Eric Adams, who will need to deliver the necessary funding. If you have not already done so, please click here to sign and share the petition, and do take a second to click those little buttons on the right sidebar to “Like” us on Facebook and “Follow” us on Twitter so we can show our strength in numbers.