Norm Needleman


Norm Needleman



October 13, 2022

Senator Needleman Joins East Haddam Leaders For Groundbreaking Of New Track At Nathan-Hale Ray High School

On Wednesday evening, State Senator Norm Needleman (D-Essex) joined East Haddam leaders including East Haddam Superintendent of Schools Brian Reas and Board of Education Chairman Marc Pisciotti at Nathan-Hale Ray High School for the official groundbreaking ceremony for a new track to be installed at the school for students participating in track and field. The project comes as the State Bond Commission released $1.4 million in funding to support it earlier this year, allowing for the work to move forward.

The project will see a new running and walking track installed around the school’s soccer field to support lane running, additional areas to be developed for holding track and field events, field irrigation and a concessions facility with restrooms and storage areas for members of the public.

“This is an example of the community coming together and working toward a common purpose,” said Sen. Needleman. “This effort dates back to before the COVID-19 pandemic, when East Haddam’s young athletes drew my attention to their need for a track. After hard work by many people working for the benefit of the town, I’m proud that we’re here today celebrating this groundbreaking.”

“If it wasn’t for Senator Needleman, we never would have gotten the funding we need from the state,” said Chairman Pisciotti. “He was instrumental. He came out, talked to the kids and said he would be an advocate and he certainly was one. The citizens of East Haddam were here for us, Senator Needleman fought for us and the Purple Fund helped with contributions. When this thing gets kicked off, it’ll largely be because of Senator Needleman.”

“We are really excited to see this project get off the ground,” said Reas. “It’s been a long time coming and we really appreciate the groundswell of support that we’ve seen for it.”

In 2021, Sen. Needleman toured Nathan Hale-Ray High School to learn about this project and its benefits for the East Haddam Community, and has worked alongside East Haddam leaders including Board of Education Chairman Marc Piscotti and Superintendent Brian Reas to advocate in favor. In addition to providing improved resources to local athletes, the project will provide the local community with new opportunities to come together and cheer on teams.

The project will take an existing lighted field at the school and convert it into an improved soccer field, adding six to eight lanes for running and further enhanced amenities. In addition to the advantages for students, the enhanced complex will provide a draw for East Haddam to host and hold local and regional athletics events.