The following was published on Norwich University’s website:
Athletics: Sabine Field Grand Reopening slated for Sept. 14
NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Norwich University will debut the newly-renovated Sabine Field on Saturday, Sept. 14, with a rededication and grand reopening ceremony prior to the football team’s 1:30 p.m. home opener against Saint Lawrence University. The $6 million, 10-month renovation project creates a multi-sport, multi-activity lit stadium that features an all-new synthetic turf field that will meet the NCAA regulations for football, men’s and women’s soccer, and men’s and women’s lacrosse programs. State-of-the-art energy efficient lighting will enable the first outdoor night games in Norwich athletic history. The 400-meter resilient urethane running track features 42-inch lanes and inside track curbing. The stadium experience will also be enhanced via new sound system, bleachers, and press box. A new hospitality plaza will feature game day concessions and merchandise sales.
The newly-refurbished WWII M4 Sherman tank “Sabine Sally”, the propeller and the anchor all proudly stand guard over the west end of the field in the new Monument Plaza.
“Thanks to the generosity of alumni, parents and friends during our Bearing the Torch fundraising initiative, we were able to renovate Sabine Field and bring our facilities for football, soccer and lacrosse to a new level,” said Norwich President Richard Schneider. “This facility will be used by not only athletes but all students, throughout the year.”
The grand reopening will feature the football team’s home opener against SLU, as well as a men’s and women’s soccer doubleheader against Albertus Magnus starting at 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. respectively.
“I am very pleased for our student athletes that the transformation of Sabine Field is complete and that our teams will now begin to participate on this beautiful field,” said Norwich University Director of Athletics Tony Mariano. “I know that the University and the Northfield community are very excited about being a part of this historic event on Sept. 14.”
The day-long celebration kicks off at 10 a.m. with the rededication ceremony at the Sabine Field gate. The rededication ceremony will honor two iconic coaches in NU athletic history in Joe Sabol and Wallace ‘Wally’ Baines.
Sabol coached the NU football team for 10 years, compiling a 48-33-1 record from 1965-1974, while Baines started and was the inaugural coach for the men’s lacrosse and cross country programs at Norwich. Both men are members of the Norwich University Hall of Fame.
Starting at 11 a.m. a tailgate event will be held in the Plumley Armory parking lot that will be open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis for parking-space availability.
The grand reopening ceremony will begin at 1 p.m. and will feature a speech by President Schneider. There will also be a parade of football alumni and the current members of the NU men’s and women’s soccer, as well as men’s and women’s lacrosse teams.
Three local Vermont companies played a major role in the project, including Engelberth Construction of Colchester, SD Ireland Company of Williston, and Bates & Murray Inc. of Barre.
“Norwich utilized Vermont based contractors for the vast majority of this project,” said Norwich University Chief Administrative Officer Dave Magida. “We want to be a good corporate citizen and utilize local firms. More importantly, we have learned over the course of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of projects over many years that Vermonters help us complete projects on time and on budget and to exacting quality standards. Vermonters will always be the core of our construction teams.”