Engineer Wins Award for MRC

The MAF would like to congratulate Madison Borough Engineer Bob Vogel for leading a cross-departmental team of borough employees in the successful design and implementation of the Madison Recreation Complex. While we already know what a great venue we have in the MRC, the New Jersey Society of Municipal Engineers (NJSME) awarded the project the Municipal Construction Project of the year for 2012.

Award-Winning team: Vogel, Harrington, Buckelew, Holden

The MAF is grateful for the support and dedication from the award-winning team, including Bob, Dennis Harrington, Dan Buckelew, Mary-Anna Holden, and Don Links, in seeing this project through from initial design to completion, both on time and under budget. With the combined efforts of all our volunteers, the Recreation Committee and the governing body, both past and present, this complex became a reality. Madison has and will continue to benefit greatly from this award-winning facility.

We enjoyed a full year of youth sports at the MRC and can truly appreciate the positive impact this complex has had on both children and adults in Madison. Fewer games were canceled due to bad weather or field conditions, and the soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, softball and junior football programs all received praise from parents and athletes, coaches and visitors about the quality of the fields and efficiency of the complex. In addition, several municipalities have contacted the borough to tour the MRC for use as a benchmark for design of their own facilities.

The MAF, as the fundraising arm for the project, has been working hard to raise private funds to defray the cost of the MRC. In our first full year we held a 50/50 raffle, built the field house that was donated to the borough, collected user fees from sports programs utilizing the MRC, launched the “M Club”, managed our first Madison/Harding Annual Appeal, and visited every local business regarding participation in the field sign program. We also coordinated our efforts with Zack Ellis, Director of Recreation, who was able to generate additional income by renting the complex during the summer of 2012, when it was not in use by Madison athletes.

At the end of the first full year of fundraising, we have raised approximately $250,000 for the MRC. After paying off the cost of the field house, the MAF intends to make a principal reduction of $50,000 in early January to reduce the outstanding MRC loan. This, coupled with the additional $20,000 from field rentals, will reduce the loan by $70,000 this year. The MAF has also paid the yearly interest expense on the outstanding debt balance for years 2011 and 2012.

We know our work is not done. We look forward to another successful fundraising year in 2013, and are planning a Spring 2013 fundraiser in addition to our continued focus on the M Club and field sign programs. Details of our fundraising efforts can be found at our website (www.madisonathleticfoundation.org). We are grateful to have so many generous donors in both Madison and Harding. A list of our supporters on the MAF website.

The MAF would like to recognize outgoing Councilman Don Links for his tremendous dedication to the MRC and his commitment from inception through completion of the project. We are grateful to have had Don as the champion of Madison athletics during his time on council and will miss his leadership. We look forward to working with Councilman Rob Catalanello, who was asked by the mayor to champion the fundraising efforts.

We look forward to many amazing years of use at the MRC and yet another successful year of fundraising for the MAF. Congratulations again to the team of borough employees on the First Place NJSME award.

See the letter to the editor of the Madison Eagle

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