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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

More money, effort needed to build Zach Tompkin’s field of dreams: Fifth “Zach Attack” 5k fundraiser on Friday

HUDSON – The Zach Tompkins Memorial Fund will host the fifth annual “Zach Attack 5k Run/Walk” this Friday evening at 6:30 at Alvirne High School and all proceeds will go toward building a memorial stadium for Zach more than four years after he died in his sleep.

Two years ago, ground was broken on the Zach’s Stadium, a new place for youth football to be played in Hudson, but more money and effort is needed to build Zach’s field of dreams. ...

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HUDSON – The Zach Tompkins Memorial Fund will host the fifth annual “Zach Attack 5k Run/Walk” this Friday evening at 6:30 at Alvirne High School and all proceeds will go toward building a memorial stadium for Zach more than four years after he died in his sleep.

Two years ago, ground was broken on the Zach’s Stadium, a new place for youth football to be played in Hudson, but more money and effort is needed to build Zach’s field of dreams.

“There’s a lot of work to be done. My husband’s been there the past few days cutting down trees, opening up the land. We’re moving forward, but we could use all the support we can get,” Necole Tompkins said.

The town of Hudson donated 13 acres and gave a 25-year lease for the stadium in 2011. The organization held a groundbreaking ceremony October 2012 at the site at 9 Industrial Drive off of Route 111.

“We’re so close, things are coming to fruition, we just really need the manpower,” she said.

Tompkins said they have a plan for the stadium, but they could use support in terms of labor—community volunteers and skilled workers such as plumbers, electricians and construction workers.

Zach Tompkins was 11-years-old when he died suddenly in his sleep March 8, 2010. Before his passing, Tompkins had shared a dream with his family – he wished to own a stadium for his home football team, The Hudson-Litchfield Bears.

“He was a running back, he loved it. Football was everything to him. He worked really hard at it and excelled … and showed awesome sportsmanship,” said Zach’s mother, Necole.

Zach had been playing football with the Bears since age 7.

The memorial organization has spent the last several years raising money and hosting events to build the stadium in his memory.

After the 5k, the organization will host a “Ride for Zach” motorcycle ride September 13, starting at the Hudson Community Center, followed by the 5th Annual Golf Tournament on Sept. 15. The tournament will be located at Shaker Hills Country Club in Harvard, Mass.

Tompkins said the community support has been amazing.

“Every year since the first year there’s been 500 to over 750 runners,” she said. The biggest obstacle has been when the race has scheduling conflicts with football practice since so many runners are young football players, she said.

“Because it’s a Friday night, we’re hoping they’re free … or hoping the coach will allow them to run for practice,” she said.

The tentative goal for the evening is $11,000, she said. A reachable goal if a similar number of runners participate as previous years. Registration for adults is $30, college students and youth 18 and under can register for $10.

For Friday’s Fun Run/Walk, Tompkins recommended people arrive by 5 p.m. to register on site.

“Usually the night of the event, we get the most people registered … it ends up being crazy,” she said. Runners receive a free “Zach Attack” T-shirt. This year’s shirt features the winning design from entries submitted from the community.

More information on upcoming events, to donate, volunteer, or to register for the Zach Attack 5k, see the organization’s website www.zacharytompkins.org.

Tina Forbes can be reached at 594-6402 or tforbes@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow Forbes on Twitter (@Telegraph_TinaF).