621 Main St, Wilbraham, MA 01095



Why can’t we just improve the grass?

It is not possible to adequately improve or maintain natural grass fields to meet the demand Minnechaug has for field space. Natural grass needs continual repair and replacement to keep the surface playable as well as “down time” to allow repairs to take hold. Bad weather, be it rain, snow or excessive heat, damages the surface requiring extra maintenance. High impact play, particularly on a field that is subject to bad weather, causes even more damage.


Our high school sports teams have severely limited access to our existing natural grass field and youth teams are denied any access at all in order to protect the field.  


Additionally, both during and after rain or snow, this field is often closed. Many teams are bused to neighboring schools, at a significant cost to the Athletic Department, to hold games or practices on artificial turf. Improving the current natural grass field will not change this situation. Artificial turf is the only solution that provides adequate access for the number of teams and athletes we have both at the high school and in the community.

What are the Towns of Wilbraham And Hampden contributing to this project?

We need your support at town meeting on May 14th to vote towards receiving CPA funds from both Wilbraham and Hampden to kick off our fundraising efforts

CPA Amounts Approved by CPA for Town Meeting Vote
Wilbraham: $205,200
Hampden: $64,800

Who will benefit from this project?

The entire community will benefit from having artificial turf fields. Minnechaug High School athletic teams and student groups will have more practice time, more home games and be able to use the fields for physical education classes and band. Youth sports teams such as football, lacrosse and soccer, will have access for home games and be able to host jamborees and conferences, financially benefiting from gate fees and concession stand profits.

What impact do high school athletic fees have on this project?

None. Athletic fees help defray operating costs for the high school athletic program. The Municipal Town budget pays for maintenance of the athletic fields through the Parks and Recreation budget.

What type of work does it take to maintain an artificial turf field?

Turf field maintenance is estimated to be approximately $5,000 per year. This maintenance includes:

  • Sweeping every 2 weeks *
  • Raking every 4-6 weeks *
  • Aerating 3 times per year *
  • Infill top dressing as needed
  • Painting of additional lines as needed

*These steps require an attachment to the current mower that will be provided as part of this project.

What does the term “infill” mean when we are talking about artificial turf?

The infill is the material that is set in between the green blades of plastic grass to help the blades stand up.

How long do artificial turf fields last?

The Turf comes equipped with an 8 year warranty. However Field Turf products have been known to far outlast their standard warranty.

Does artificial turf contain lead?

Lead is not used in the manufacture of the turf products we are considering for this project.

Can the turf carpet be recycled or re-purposed at the end of its life cycle?

Yes, turf carpet can be recycled and/or repurposed. Today, the carpet can be ground and used in the production of the shock pad that sits under the carpet. The carpet can also be cut up and reused at indoor facilities, like batting cages, or used outdoors in landscaping. Over the next 10-12 years, until we need to replace the carpet at Chaug, we expect the turf industry to develop more opportunities for recycling the carpet.

Do you have to use any chemicals to keep artificial turf sanitized?

No chemicals are required to maintain or sanitize the turf products we are considering.

Will the water coming off the field be a health concern to our drinking water?

No concerns with water runoff have ever been raised on turf fields that don’t contain crumb rubber.  Runoff from parking lots and natural grass with their weed killer and fertilizer are more of a concern; no chemicals will be used on our turf fields.  There is no reason to believe the turf fields will be a risk to our water supply.  According to Catherine Hamilton, DEP Drinking Water Program/Boston, “DEP does not identify artificial turf to be a threat to drinking water quality”.  See Mass DEP Well Head Protection Regulations document for more information.