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Town Not Lining Youth Soccer Fields

A local parent shares her frustration at the possibility East Haven teams may have to forfeit soccer games because the town has failed to line the fields in time for play this weekend.

Credit: Patch file photo
Credit: Patch file photo

Just found out East Haven's soccer teams may have to forfeit all of our games this weekend because the town doesn't have time to line the fields (but they're lining the baseball fields), even though they've known about our opening day for a month now. 

Joe Maturo, Joe Maturo Jr - there has to be SOMETHING you can do about this?! Please?! The kids are going to be heartbroken. 

Soccer always seems to take a backseat in this town. Baseball, hockey and football seem to be the almighty sports and no one cares about soccer.

I just spoke with Frank Gentilesco over at the town and he claims no one told them it needed to be done and that they will not bring in the people to get it done for tomorrow. 

 Seems we go through this every year. Every year, we give them the schedule and every year they say they didn't get it and our fields don't get lined. EHYS absolutely told them a month ago that tomorrow is opening day.

FYI - I am not on the board of EHYS, I am merely a concerned (and very disappointed) parent.

RESPONSE

The following is a response, sent to East Haven Patch, from Frank Gentilesco of the East Haven Mayor's Office.

The first our office heard of a problem with the fields was a phone call made to us just prior to 3:30 pm on Friday.

When I inquired with Public Services, I was told by three supervisors including the Chief Caretaker Steve Kluth that the department was never definitively given a schedule of when the season would be opening nor any of the dates where games were scheduled.

Mr. Kluth is the Chief Caretaker of the Parks Department and he coordinates all the scheduling and preparation of getting our athletic fields ready for play.

Mr. Kluth told me he received a call from someone with the league about a week ago asking that the nets be put on the fields for practices, but was never told of opening day and to this date, still does not have this season's schedule.

This week our department had to get both Little League's multiple fields ready for play as for the first time, opening day for both leagues was scheduled for the same day.

Had our Parks Department known well in advance (like he did for Little League) the soccer opening day games were the same day, our crews would have either gotten the fields ready somehow or would have worked out a schedule with the three organizations which would make that possible.

Finally, when I asked Steve how long it takes to get the soccer fields lined for play, he informed me that since each field has to be measured and sight lined to specifications it could take a good part of two work days, so there was no way to get the fields lined for Saturday, when informed lateFriday afternoon.

One other thing, I did tell Ms. Massini-Ryan that I am sure the players would be disappointed, but it was said as an expression of empathy and certainly not in the manner she is insinuating. I hope this clears up much of this misinformation.
abby April 26, 2014 at 08:26 AM
Of course its everyone with EHYS fault not anyone else's! Seriously spring soccer and little league start around the same time every year in every town. Went to Madison 2 weeks ago and their field was lined already same with West Haven so im not buy what this guy is selling. Gillis field looks like the town landfill instead of a soccer field. Was it my job to go down there spend my time and use my personal stuff to clean it? I think not Frank Gentilesco and Steve Kluth. why did i do then? That's a simple answer I'm tired of seeing our beautiful field look like that its embarrassing and unacceptable and some of the things I found down there is just down right dangerous for little kids to be in contact with! Frankly I'm just tired of soccer taking a back seat in this town our kids deserve just as much as the baseball and other sports players. Instead of spending all their time trying to defend not doing what needed to be done for the soccer fields by pinning the blame on everyone else get it together and get it done for the kids. We have a great program with dedicated coaches, players and parents after all of this I'm sure things are going to start changing I know I will not stay quiet any longer.
Magenta April 26, 2014 at 10:11 AM
@frank your response smells just like the dog droppings on the fields. There is no doubt that the dates were communicated to the town. Mr. Gildersleeve has been involved for about 20 years. This is not his first rodeo. More lies from the embarrassing administration in town hall. You can go to youth soccer website for dates. http://www.ehys.org/app/index/list/?org=ehys.org
sue stacey April 26, 2014 at 10:19 AM
The next Park & Rec meeting is May 12th @7pm at the Senior Center
Jeryl Massini-Ryan April 26, 2014 at 11:19 AM
We got Moulthrop lined (as best as we could LOL) just now and Mr. Gildersleeve just headed over to Gillis to get that done. The schedule for EHYS is at http://www.ehys.org. Just click on "Master Schedule" on the left and you'll be able to see whenever there will be a game at either of our fields. So Frankie - consider yourself notified of the schedules for the entire season. And by the way, even though we took care of things this morning, in the rain, the fields still need to be professionally lined, so if you guys can tear yourself away from the baseball league for a day or two, maybe you can manage to get it done?
Mike April 26, 2014 at 08:01 PM
There are talented and enthusiastic kids in East Haven who just want to play. It shouldn't take this much trouble and acrimony to get something so simple done.Sadly typical.

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