Why Now?

60 years of being the heart of Thornton Academy and the greater Saco community

Linnell Gymnasium, built as a state-of-the-art facility over fifty years ago, can no longer successfully support the school’s ever increasing athletic demands. Built in 1963 for a student population of 650, the gym now serves approximately 1,700 students. The floor is worn, the mechanical systems are antiquated and inefficient. The building does not meet modern accessibility and safety standards. It lacks adequate space for weight training, strength and conditioning facilities, locker rooms, coaches’ offices and equipment storage. It can no longer accommodate the entire student body for whole school events, assemblies and ceremonies. The lack of space forces athletic teams to practice well beyond the traditional after-school hours and prohibits the school from offering an intramural program or providing recreational space for a broader range of students. Given Thornton’s goal of offering an athletic program broad enough to allow all interested students to participate in sports, the school’s athletic facilities must be renovated and expanded.

The gym also plays a major role in the life of the greater Saco community and has hosted a variety of community and social events such as the Kerrymen’s Pub Road Race/Mary’s Walk, the Children’s Winter Carnival, and the annual college fair. Thornton Academy is proud to be at the center of community life in Saco. The new Athletic Complex will continue our commitment to opening our doors to community events. 

Join us in supporting the athletic complex capital campaign and help Thornton Academy build the future!

Voices from Linnell Gymnasium


Remember the 2014 girls basketball team ending McAuley's 57 game unbeaten streak? The boys basketball team winning the 2009 Gold Ball? Our state championship and homecoming rallies? The WGME School Spirit Food Drive? Linnell Gymnasium is and will continue to be a place where great TA moments happen.

kevin kezal, coach 

graduates wait outside linnell gymnasium