FA Scores! Campaigning for 21st Century Competition Under the Lights

For more than two centuries, the stewardship of Fryeburg Academy’s alumni, families, and friends have enabled it to remain true to its mission and meet the demands of its present and future. The school needs that stewardship again now. We request that you consider your capacity to give generously, and we ask you to make a gift to the FA Scores! Campaign.
FA Scores! Campaign

Our Challenges

Fryeburg Academy is most fortunate to have playing fields in abundance on its 106-acre campus; however, the fact that all are grass surfaces and limited to daytime and good weather use creates significant disadvantages for the school’s athletic program, curtails use by the wider community, and hampers our ability to generate critical auxiliary revenue.
Competitive Disadvantage
Grass fields are often unplayable on inclement weather days, and in our location, they remain under snow long enough to delay spring teams’ outdoor practices by three-to-five weeks. Twenty-six Maine schools have turf fields; like FA, most of them enroll 500+ students and are thus in our division. More than half of the schools in our conference play on artificial turf and are unhampered by seasonal delay in field use or generally inclement weather, resulting in more practice time, fewer rescheduled matches, and better competitive readiness. Fall and spring athletes at Fryeburg Academy regularly face opponents who are at an advantage for having trained on turf and become acclimated to it; our teams’ disadvantage in this regard is even more consequential in playoff rounds and beyond. Little opportunity to acclimate to the differences in night games under lights presents a similar challenge.
Constraints on Scheduling
Wet grass fields frequently make athletic practices and competitions unviable and necessitate much rescheduling. The absence of electric lights on any field is the biggest constraint; possibilities for late fall and early spring games are very limited given darkness well before 6:00 p.m. By mid-October, for example, schools without lights schedule varsity-level matches only, shortchanging sub-varsity play. Additionally, the MPA rarely considers FA a viable playoff host site due to the absence of lights and artificial turf.


Unrealized Potential for Community Use & Experiences
The Academy strives to be an important partner with community youth teams but is unable to do so in one important respect: our grass fields are in use throughout afternoons and into evening until dark. Without the scheduling flexibility allowed by field lighting, youth rec. teams and other outside organizations are rarely able to use school fields. Also: without the ability to host night games in football, field hockey, soccer, and lacrosse, Fryeburg Academy competitions draw many fewer spectators than has become the norm at nighttime high school competitions.
Undeveloped Revenue Opportunities
The Academy cannot provide the exceptional educational experience for which it is known by tuition receipts alone. Every year, our budgetary soundness requires other revenue sources, and it’s critical that we increase these auxiliary streams. We are currently overlooked by the many camps, clinics, and regional clubs regularly in the market to rent campus spaces, given their preference for facilities with artificial turf and lights. Similarly, as prospective boarding students visit schools, FA is regularly under consideration alongside schools with stadiums, a factor that registers with families for whom athletic opportunities are an important element in their ultimate selection.

Fryeburg Academy

FRYEBURG ACADEMY
745 Main Street
Fryeburg, ME 04037
p. (207) 935-2001      
f.  (207) 935-5013      
admissions@fryeburgacademy.org
Fryeburg Academy is an independent boarding and day school, serving grades 9-12 and postgraduate. We invite you to explore our site and learn how students from around the globe find their place in the world through our exceptional academic, art, and athletic programs.