Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

New sod field at Depew will sleep for winter

Same grass used in Yankee Stadium

A giant plant, all 108,000 square feet of it, has been taking root in Depew Park since Saturday. The plant, which is sod, is putting down roots and will be ready for activities by the beginning of June, said Mike Valentine of DeRosa Sports Construction, the company awarded the contract to install the field at Depew. 

“More fields get ruined by people using it prematurely,” he added, saying the sod needs two growing seasons to acclimate to its new environment. 

The grass can last up to 20 years if it’s allowed to get strong root systems in place that will allow it to regenerate. The longevity of the grass is determined by its root system and the maintenance it receives, said Valentine, who has been with the third generation family-owned business for 24 years. 

The grass or sod is grown at Delea Farms on Long Island and is the same turf used in Yankee Stadium. There were multiple deliveries of the sod to Depew Park, and it was installed during four days last week. “The weather cooperated,” said Valentine about the Depew Park job. Temperature, rain, clouds and sun all play a part in how the job of laying the sod out progresses. “This time of year is better to get it down because the sun isn’t as intense and the nights and days are cooler.” He added the roots will begin growing now before winter. 

The running track that rings the field will be asphalt, and Valentine said they are anticipating laying it down before December. The track will not have the rubber coating that the track at Torpy Field has. DeRosa Construction also installed that field for Peekskill City School District. Alongside the track in Depew Park, grass seed is planted. Because of that, the entire field will be fenced off until the sod is ready to be used. 

Valentine and his crew will be monitoring and assessing how the grass is growing. “There are a lot of people who will make the decision about when the field can be open,” said Valentine. “I’m not the last word on it.” 

Alongside the field which will be used for soccer, football and lacrosse games, a new volleyball court was installed.    

New volleyball court at edge of field in Depew Park. (Photo by Regina Clarkin)

In June of 2021 the city learned it was awarded a million dollar grant from the state to upgrade recreational aspects of Depew Park. Peekskill City Council member Ramon Fernandez worked closely with former State Assemblymember Sandy Galef in securing the funding, which will also bring new pickleball courts and restore long-neglected tennis and basketball courts at the north end of the park.


About the Contributor
Regina Clarkin
Regina Clarkin, Editor and Publisher
When the Peekskill Herald weekly newspaper ceased publishing in August 2000 it was the first time in the history of the city that there wasn’t a local newspaper.  The award-winning weekly was often referred to as the ‘glue’ of the community. Founded on January 9, 1986 by Regina Clarkin, Kathy Daley and Rich Zahradnik with a $7,000 credit card line, the paper filled the void created when the daily Evening Star was sold to Gannett and moved out of town. Founding publisher Regina Clarkin continued to live in the Peekskill Cortlandt area and turned her attention to other life endeavors.  Through the ensuing 19 years, Clarkin was frequently stopped in town and asked when she would start up the Herald again. In January 2019, Clarkin decided it was less labor intensive to deliver a weekly blog than a print newspaper so she began posting one story a week about life in Peekskill. After a successful crowd funding campaign in 2020, the Herald was incorporated as a non-profit corporation in July of 2021. Peekskill Herald is a digital relative of the former print edition, featuring many of the favorite aspects of the beloved Peekskill Herald such as old pictures, personality profiles and well written stories about newsworthy events. Regina Clarkin is the editor and publisher of the site. Photo by Joe Squillante