In the Merrimack Valley: Fate of the Merrimack Valley Conference a Political Topic?

Some might wonder about how elected officials take up certain topics. Lately here’s been some buzz about Senator Susan Fargo’s push to name the iconic Rex Trailer as the Commonwealth’s official cowboy. Now it’s a regional school sports league on a legislator’s radar sceen. There’s a story in today’s Eagle Tribune about State Senator Steve Baddour’s reaction to the possible break-up of the Merrimack Valley Conference – the school sports league. He was shocked and upset at a  Eagle Tribune headline from last Sunday’s edition –  “The Death of the MVC?” As a result he contacted Merrimack Valley-area State Senators to look into the matter.

Last Monday, Baddour began contacting his fellow senators with schools in the MVC, including Eileen Donoghue, Susan C. Fargo, and Kenneth J. Donnelly. Together, the four state senators decided to set up a meeting with the superintendents from the 11 MVC schools (also Lawrence, Haverhill, Lowell, Central Catholic and Notre Dame of Tyngsborough, which competes in most sports for girls) requesting principals and athletic directors to join them.

The meeting will be Thursday at 8:30 a.m. at Middlesex Community College.

State Senator Barry Finegold (D-Andover) will not attend the meeting – noting that he hopes the MVC doen’t break-up but that it’s the decision of others.

One state senator’s name missing from the collaboration is Barry Finegold of Andover. The high schools in Andover, Lawrence, Dracut and Tewksbury are in the MVC.

“I’m not a principal. I’m not an athletic director,” said Finegold, who was a defensive lineman on the football team at Andover High. “I believe decisions like this should be up to them. Personally, I hope (the MVC) stays together. It’s near and dear to my heart.

“As for discussion about changing leagues, I believe there’s always talk about that these days,” said Finegold.

Read the full Eagle Tribune article here.


The Merrimack Valley Conference (or MVC) is a high school sports league located in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and is named after the Merrimack River Valley where all of the primary league schools are located. The league members are also members of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (aka: The MIAA). The MVC evolved out of the old Lowell Suburban League, which sponsored football, boys basketball and girls basketball, and the Merrimack Valley Suburban League which was a baseball only league. The Suburban Leagues were formed in the 1930s and different school participated in different sports. In 1955, the Suburban Leagues reformed in to the more organized Lowell Suburban Conference which became the MVC by the mid 1960s. More here.