Stoneleigh-Burnham starts renovation on arts spaces

  • Stoneleigh-Burnham School students attend art class in one of the spaces about to be renovated. ​​​CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

  • Stoneleigh-Burnham School’s art gallery, art loft and five art classrooms are being renovated. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 11/11/2019 1:30:17 AM

GREENFIELD — Stoneleigh-Burnham School is about to begin renovations on its art gallery, large art loft and five art classrooms, and will also be building a set of new horse paddocks and expanding its fitness area.

Head of School Stephanie Luebbers said one of the capital projects will begin this fall and be completed by the time students return from their two-week winter vacation, while the horse paddocks will be built and fitness area expanded next spring.

Luebbers said Mowry & Schmidt Inc. of Greenfield will be doing the renovations. The paddock project will go out to bid soon.

“This is the first renovation since the building was constructed,” Luebbers said. “All of the major art spaces will be renovated. The fitness area is attached to the art areas by a continuous roof, so it’s all being done in one place.”

Displaced classes will be held in other buildings.

The fitness area, which is currently a narrow room with a few pieces of equipment, will be built out about 10 to 12 feet and will host different teams for whatever they need, whether it be workouts or meetings, Luebbers said. The school wants to build a space that will accommodate an entire team at one time.

Luebbers said the renovation of the arts areas is expected to take about eight weeks. By the time students return at the beginning of January, they will be able to occupy the arts spaces.

“They’ll be back in the classrooms, which house pottery and weaving classes, music classes and digital arts,” she said.

Luebbers said all three projects will cost a total of less than $1 million. She said the school is “very thoughtful and purposeful” when it comes to spending money it raises for projects. The projects will be paid for with donations and gifts from alumnae, parents and friends.

Once it re-opens, the gallery will continue to show student, faculty and staff art, as well as a couple of local artists’ work each year.

Luebbers said the Equestrian Center, which houses about 30 school horses and a handful of students’ horses, will have more room when the paddocks are completed in the spring.

“There will be better drainage, a self-watering system and a trough system,” she said.

Luebbers said there are about 150 rides each week at the Equestrian Center. The program is one of the ones Stoneleigh-Burnham School is best known for — the middle school team made it to regionals already this year and the high school team is working its way there, she said. It is the only secondary school to offer the British Horse Society certification. She said the school is also well-known for its debate, public speaking and art programs.

While the school uses donations to pay for its capital projects, like the ones it is embarking on now, Luebbers said it also puts money into the endowment fund to maintain the upkeep of those projects.

Reach Anita Fritz at 413-772-0261, ext. 269 or afritz@recorder.com.




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