Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo reportedly has set in motion a bid to build a brand new Miller Field. The Viking Pride Foundation has made the construction of a new field a priority and held a recent meeting to begin its efforts toward building a new facility. Town Manager James McKenna has also targeted Miller Field as a priority and wisely requested a professional study of the facility and its future use.
McKenna and the Town Council, notably Council President Peter Gill, have improved our parks and recreational spaces throughout the town, helped by the Parks Committee (which was Peter’s idea) and the diligent efforts of DPW Director Steve Calla and his staff of dedicated employees. And let’s not forget Winthrop Parks and Recreation Director Sean Driscoll, who uses the parks under his jurisdiction to conduct one of the best recreational programs in the state.
Miller Field has been in a state of such disrepair over the past few years that the Northeastern Conference will not allow Winthrop High to host home outdoor track meets because of the unsafe conditions. And as for the ol’ Miller gridiron itself, every Viking fan and athlete knows what a disgraceful mosh pit it becomes with any kind of inclement weather (which should not be surprising given that Miller Field was constructed on marshland back in the 1930s as a WPA project).
In short, it is an understatement to say that the athletic fields at Winthrop High are among the worst in the state.
It would be too good to be true if Speaker DeLeo could somehow find a way to bring a brand new, multi-purpose field to Winthrop, along with a brand new outdoor track. How great it would be the future of the Winthrop school system and its athletic program to have a brand new, state-of-the-art high school/middle school — which will open in August, 2017 — and a spectacular athletic complex right across the street.
If the Speaker sets his mind to a project or a challenge, things happen, and knowing his love for Winthrop High sports — both his son, Robbie, and daughter, Rachele, were outstanding athletes who wore the Winthrop uniform proudly — we expect that the Speaker has been working behind the scenes to make this dream for Winthrop athletes a reality.
Bob has brought home the bacon so often for this town in his role as state representative and now in his powerful position as the top Democratic leader at the State House. We have confidence that he will rise up again and deliver the “field of dreams” for Winthrop student-athletes and residents of this town.