GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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July 20, 2013

Newell nears finish line

The four-year-old drive to renovate and rebuild Gloucester High School’s Newell Stadium is in the home stretch, with work crews adding some finishing touches to the stadium’s reconstructed track on Friday, and the construction of new rest room facilities the only significant piece still to be added to the project.

“We’re almost there — almost,” Dick Wilson, fund-raising chief for the Gloucester Fishermen’s Athletic Association, said Friday.

Crews worked this week to finish and coat the new track, which, when ready for use in September, will allow GHS teams to host meets for the first time in years while welcoming other local runners as well.

In all, the project is being completed at a cost of more than $3 million, with funding generated by the GFAA’s private fund-raising efforts, a $500,000 boost from New Balance footwear, and through a number of grants from the state and local businesses, with a $1.5 million bond secured from the city as well.

The stadium will once again be able to host a variety of events, from the school’s graduation ceremonies and the Cape Ann Relay For Life to St. Peter’s Fiesta soccer game and a variety of GHS sports activities.

But its grand opening will come when it serves in perhaps its best-known role — as home to the Gloucester High Fishermen’s football team when it opens the new season in September.

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