The move to an artificial playing surface in stadiums is a trend in Northeast Ohio, and its installation at Padua means that all teams within the Blue Division of the North Coast League will have a synthetic turf system. Like many secondary school facilities, Padua Stadium, opened in 2000, is the scene of athletic activity six months a year, hosting football, soccer, lacrosse, and even CYO football games.
“Despite some improvements in the drainage and grass surface, the stadium field has taken a beating over the years from the number of events we have in the fall season” says Kevin Leigh, Athletic Director. “By switching to a synthetic turf, we will be able to provide a consistent playing surface and increase the number of times we use the field from 50 to well over 300 times.”
The consistent condition of artificial turf will permit teams to both practice and play on the stadium’s lighted field, and will make it possible for the school’s marching band to practice on the soft surface instead of on the asphalt of the parking lot. During good weather, physical education classes will use the field as well.
Work is being performed by Maumee Bay Turf Center of Oregon, Ohio using a playing surface developed by UBU Sports. The artificial grass material is the same playing surface as used in the Superdome and MetLife Stadium, sites of Superbowls XLVII and XLVIII.
“We are very excited to announce this latest improvement to the Padua Franciscan campus,” said Fr. Allan DaCorte, ofm, President of the school. “We owe it to our students and families to provide first-tier educational and athletic facilities that keep pace with our programs. The stadium turf is just the first of a series of major facility renovations the administration and Board of Trustees have planned.”