Trashed Field Forces 36 Bands to Cancel Performances at High School in Lawrence, Massachusetts | NECN
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Trashed Field Forces 36 Bands to Cancel Performances at High School in Lawrence, Massachusetts

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    NEWSLETTERS

    After a Brazilian festival left the field at Veterans Memorial Stadium trashed, three dozen marching bands were forced to cancel their championship. (Published Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016)

    Days after a Brazilian festival left Veterans Memorial Stadium completely trashed in Lawrence, Massachusetts, three dozen marching bands learned they would not be playing on the field.

    The city told organizers of a high school marching band championship Thursday that they couldn't use the damaged field, and more cancellations could be on the way.

    The 36 high school bands from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine are now scrambling to find a new stadium because the turf is permanently wrecked. And there's no timetable yet on when the field will be ready for other events.

    "Shame on them," said Everett marching band member Fernando Barbosa. "It's not their stadium. It's a stadium for high school kids. The football team practices there, the band practices there."

    The New England Scholastics Band Association Championship was scheduled for Oct. 30 at the stadium. The problem is there's still a lot of glass, beer and other trash embedded in the field, and it's a safety hazard.

    All of this being blamed on Floripa Productions, the organizers of a Brazilain festival held on the field Sunday night. The city plans on filing a lawsuit against the organizers, hoping to replace the turf, which could cost more than half a millions dollars.

    "We're going to have to push through it, it's one of those things," said Everett band member Sarah Tavares.

    Organizers say they will go ahead with the marching band championship at the end of the month. One venue that's being considered as a backup is Hormel Stadium in Medford.

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