Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Xavier bldg4 webAbout 900 assemble for the dedication of the new fine arts facility and athletic complex at Xavier High School in Middletown. (Photo by Peter J. Dylag)

MIDDLETOWN – Xavier High School dedicated its Theodore James Ryken Hall and the Ben Foisie Memorial Athletic Complex on Oct. 30.

Xavierian Brother Brian Davis, headmaster, welcomed the more than 900 people who attended the Mass and dedication ceremony, including the student body, faculty, staff and 40 other guests. Among the guests were Bishop Michael R. Cote of Norwich and Daniel Drew, mayor of Middletown.

The $8.5-million Sustaining Excellence Campaign, which began in July 2012, will continue through June of 2017, when Xavier's first class will celebrate the 50th anniversary of their graduation from the school. This campaign has given Xavier the opportunity to build the new fine arts wing as well as make significant improvements to the athletic facilities on campus, among other things.

“What a few years ago was just a dream is now a reality. I’m grateful to all of our donors who have made this possible as we continue our mission of Catholic education for Xavier’s young men,” Brother Brian said.

The Ben Foisie Memorial Athletic Complex is a brand new, lighted, multi-purpose synthetic turf field (Larry McHugh Field) inside a reconstructed eight-lane track (Robert Michalski Track). This is complete with a 1,000-seat grandstand seating area with press box.

The complex also includes a new baseball field with dugouts and upgraded bullpens. Additional work included in the project but to be constructed in a later phase includes the development of an additional 500-seat grandstand along with restrooms, locker rooms and additional storage.

Anthony Jaskot, ’69, director of athletics, credited Brother Brian and a number of other people.

“Words cannot express our deep appreciation and gratitude to all those involved in this project; and on behalf of our coaching staff, physical education staff, our students and student-athletes, I say thank you all so very much for this privilege,” he said.

The Theodore James Ryken Hall Fine Arts Facility is a new 10,000-square foot building addition that is centered around a new music rehearsal space. The build-ing is also home to a new art classroom and a chemistry classroom on the first floor

The fine arts facility includes the following features:

• Four private music practice rooms; a music suite with seating for 130 students that allows for the growth of the program; state-of-the-art video and audio recording capabilities; climate-controlled and secure storage facilities for student and school instruments; a music library housing thousands of musical scores; separate sound-proof music classroom that allows multiple music classes to occur concurrently; a fine art classroom; and state-of-the-art chemistry lab.

“The addition of the new music suite provides our young musicians the chance to study, rehearse and perform in a space that matches their talent and creativity,” said Erik Elligers, fine arts department chair. “Theodore James Ryken Hall has been a tremendous blessing to our entire community and we hope it will only lead to bigger and better opportunities for future students.”

For more information on the Sustaining Excellence Campaign contact the Xavier office of advancement at