The University of Notre Dame has announced a $5 million gift from alumnus and board member Kenn Ricci ('78) and his wife, Pamela, toward construction of facilities for the university's marching band and recreational sports programs.
The gift will fund construction of the Ricci Family Fields — a synthetic turf field to be used as a rehearsal field for the Fighting Irish marching band, complete with a band director's tower and a new storage building, restrooms, and locker room facilities. When not in use by the band, the complex, along with two additional synthetic turf fields, will be reserved for use by thousands of students participating in various RecSports activities. Construction of the fields and support building is scheduled to begin in the spring of 2017, following the completion of a geothermal well field.
"We are grateful for Kenn and Pamela's generous gift, which will not only impact the marching band and students participating in RecSports, but will also allow the university to continue to pursue our ambitious path toward carbon reduction," said Notre Dame executive vice president John Affleck-Graves. "The Ricci Family Fields construction project creates an opportunity to build a 1,350-ton geothermal well field beneath the new playing fields, therefore maximizing the benefits to the university from this single important site."
Kenn Ricci had been a member of the marching band as an undergraduate majoring in accountancy. The family's previous gifts to Notre Dame have supported the Ricci Band Rehearsal Hall, the Ricci Band Musical Excellence fund, the President's Circle, and financial aid.
"The band in many ways is the audio spirit of Notre Dame, and we are very proud to contribute to its continuing mission and successes," said Ricci.