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Dedication of Madden Stadium is Celebrated with First-Ever "Friday Night Lights" Football Game

The Hill School celebrated the first-ever “Friday Night Lights” football game and dedication of Madden Stadium, our new state-of-the-art multi-sport facility, on September 8, 2023. Located in the heart of Hill’s outdoor athletics complex at the Far Fields, Madden Stadium now serves as a centerpiece for football and lacrosse competitions as well as a gathering place for The Hill community. The School is grateful to The Hill Football Association, alumni, parents, and friends who have supported this project, including Pat Madden '82 P'17, for whom the stadium is named.

Three years ago, Madden visited Hill and toured the athletics Far Fields with Wilbur C. Riley Director of Athletics and Co-Curricular Programs Seth Eilberg P'22 '23 '25. At the time, he had a vision for a facility that could help advance Hill’s football and athletics programs and enhance the spirit of competition. He especially wanted Hill students to enjoy “Friday Night Light” games, which is something he feels should be a staple for any high school experience.

That experience is part of The Hill School Athletics Mission, which, as Eilberg stated “in addition to promising an experience that emphasizes teamwork and character development, aims to provide students with opportunities to compete at the highest level of independent school sports. Facilities like Madden Stadium help us to deliver on that mission.”

“Under the bright lights of Madden Stadium, opportunities for valuable learning experiences will be amplified,” continued Eilberg. “Here our student-athletes will build habits that prepare them for college, careers, and life.”

Head of School Kathleen Devaney echoed Eilberg’s sentiments about our students’ experiences both on and off the athletics fields.

“One key aspect of attracting talented student-athletes and coaches to Hill is having world-class facilities for our teams to train and compete in,” Devaney remarked. “The stadium will also be a gathering place for our School community, to show Hill Pride and to support classmates, advisees, dormmates and friends.”

During his remarks, Madden acknowledged that the stadium and event were “beyond my expectations.”

“Everything is wonderful here and I appreciate this whole event,” stated Madden. “This is going to accomplish what I had envisioned; we’re going to make “Friday Night Lights” happen!”

Following the formal dedication remarks, Madden, along with Frank Puccio ’66, for whom the new press box is named, took the field with Devaney and Eilberg for the ceremonial ribbon cutting. After the celebration, it was time for Hill Football to take the field against Germantown Academy on their home turf under the lights for the first time in Hill history. The Hill community showed their Hill pride as they packed the bleachers and cheered on the Blues.

While Hill put up a great battle, Germantown Academy dominated the game and won the home opener 45-21. This is just the start for Hill Football as they showed promising improvements and resilience throughout the game.

Madden Stadium features an artificial turf field, a scoreboard with full-color video display, an enclosed press box and filming platform, lights for night games, and a seating capacity for 700 spectators. The Hill School is grateful to the following individuals for their support:

  • Mr. Patrick W. Madden '82 P'17 and Mrs. Jennifer Madden
  • Mrs. Louise H. Reed and The Estate of Mr. Alan Reed ’51
  • Mr. Frank S. Puccio, Jr. '66
  • Mr. Scott M. Granowski '79
  • Mr. Mark S. Richardson '79 and Mrs. Kathryn Richardson
  • Mr. Kirwan B. Elliott '98 and Mrs. Sara Elliott
  • Mr. John N. Hale '71 and Mrs. Suzan Hale
  • Two anonymous donors, who, in addition to supporting Madden Stadium, honored the legacy of Winnie and Dick O’Shaughnessy '50 P'73 '76 '80 GP '05 '10 '13, with the naming of the O’Shaughnessy Patio, which is adjacent to Madden Stadium and the Lehrman '56 Pavilion.