New England Blade – The Turf Zone
The STMA Environmental Facility Certification program was launched in 2016. It took a committee of dedicated sports turf managers and university specialists four years to create the program. Version 2.0 is now the current document. Within two months of the program’s launch, there were eight facilities in the program. Today, there are 39 certified facilities including NESTMA member Green Farms Academy in Westport, CT.
The document includes sections on storm water management, fertilization, IPM/pesticides, mowing, energy conservation, shop building/storage, irrigation, recycling, and educational outreach. A self-assessment document completed by the sports turf manager of a facility, plus an attester evaluation, is submitted to STMA for review. A score of no less than 80% for each section triggers the visit from the attester to verify accuracy and provide additional input about the facility. The attester is either a Certified Sports Field Manager or an academic in turfgrass management. The attester completes an electronic form and recommends the facility for certification.
A $50 application fee is required when the facility assessment is submitted. Once the facility successfully achieves the certification, a $100 fee is then invoiced, which covers the cost of the recognition material sent to the facility.
STMA is just now beginning the recertification and renewal process for the first group of certified facilities.
The STMA Environment Committee, chaired by UConn Extension’s and NESTMA’s own Vickie Wallace, is currently working on Version 3.0, which will expand certification to include additional subject areas, such as landscaped areas surrounding facilities, natural areas and open space, and parking lots. For more information about STMA’s Environmental Facility Certification Program, go to STMA.org.
This article was excerpted with permission from SportsTurf magazine.
Mary Owen Honored
Family, friends and colleagues came from near and far to honor Mary Owen on September 3, 2019 at the UMass Alumni Turf Group’s annual Troll Golf Classic at TPC of Boston in Norton, MA. Speakers Bill Spence, retired superintendent of The Country Club, Dr. Pat Vittum, retired UMass professor, and NESTMA’s president Ben Polimer recognized Mary for her countless contributions to the turfgrass industry within our region.
“Mary Owen has been with NESTMA from the very beginning,” said Ben Polimer. “She has been the stabilizing force and the glue that has held our organization together. She has been a great teacher to all of us… and we thank her for the many years of dedicated service, passion, and leadership.”
NESTMA was proud to support this event with a significant contribution. Proceeds from the tournament are directed to turf education programs at UMass.READ THE ISSUE