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Does AC need a fieldhouse?

March 11, 2011

    Should Adams Central School have a multi-purpose fieldhouse?
    That question will be discussed by a committee selected by AC graduate, teacher, and football coach Michael Mosser, with at least one school board member volunteering to serve: John Sipe, president of the board.
    If a fieldhouse is formally proposed, among the prime considerations will be seeking to do the project without using an increase in tax money, as board member Brian Tonner insisted. He said the school is in the midst of a $10 million construction and renovation project and he does not want the public to get the impression that school officials simply want to keep spending money on big projects.
    Board member Steve Maller said creating a committee to discuss issues, ideas, and options would cause no harm. "Rattle the cage a little bit and see what happen," he said.
    Mosser, Sipe, and Band Director Mike Satterthwaite said a fieldhouse would be helpful for athletic, musical, and other events. Superintendent Mike Pettibone pointed out that AC's winter dance troupe had no space available at AC in 2010, so the group wound up dancing at Monmouth School, which was closed a year ago by the North Adams school board.
    Board member Wes Kuntzman said that if a fieldhouse is erected, it could be used for adult learning in a manner similar to the John Jay Learning Center in Portland.
    Mosser asked, "What are our needs, our costs, our plans?" and requested that the Adams Central community "start a vision of what [a fieldhouse] might be."
    He agreed with Tonner's viewpoint on taxes and said that if a way could be found to build a building without tax money, that would be "awesome."
    Overall, posed Mosser, "Who knows what can happen?"
    Sipe commented that no rushed decisions should be made, so the committee will take time to do its work.
    Reference was made to the large concession stand, restroom, and team meeting room building erected a few years ago at the football field for $150,000, with almost all of that money coming from donations and with a great deal of volunteer labor.
    Pettibone said the AC community was "shocked with joy" at that football building and can "share the dream" as this fieldhouse concept is debated and discussed.

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