Pop Warner Fields Opened at Middlebush Park

Middlebush Park was hopping Sept. 15 as the township’s Pop Warner Football teams played their first games on the parks turf fields.

Mayor Brian Levine conducted the coin toss for the 11:30 a.m. Midget game, in which Franklin’s Warriors faced the Piscataway Chiefs.

More than 300 children participate in the township’s Pop Warner program, making it the largest such program in Central New Jersey, according to the Franklin chapter’s president, Stanley Croughter.

In addition to the two synthetic turf fields, Middlebush Park boasts a tot lot, a skate park, three multi-fields, adult outdoor exercise equipment and a network of trails.

“It’s pretty elaborate,” said Township Manager Bob Vornlocker.

The 70-acre park was acquired by the township from Pizzo and Pizzo developers as part of the company’s required open space dedication connected to a series of developments in the late 1990s.

The total cost for creating the park will be about $8.9 million, when everything is completed, Vornlocker said.

“The synthetic fields cost $1.2 million each,” he said.

The improvements were paid for from the township’s Open Space Trust Fund, he said.

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