Rockingham Park Comes Down; Haverhill’s Link to Its Replacement

The iconic Rockingham Park clubhouse is no more. (Frank Komola photograph for WHAV News.)

A pile of salvage remained after the demolition.

A pile of salvage remained after the demolition.

And the walls came tumbling down!

A fixture on the horizon along Interstate 93 and route 28 in Salem, N.H., is no longer, as work progresses on Tuscan Brands’ and the Grossman Development Company’s Tuscan Village real estate project. The last remnants of the track’s clubhouse met the wrecking ball earlier this week.

The Rockingham Park Clubhouse and the track it overlooks had been the home to thoroughbred horse racing in New Hampshire since its opening back in 1906. The one-time site of horse races, that featured the likes of Seabiscuit in 1935 and 1936, discontinued live horse racing in 2009, but continued to carry live simulcasts of races from around the country until finally closing in 2016.

Joseph Faro owns Tuscan Brands, one of the two developers of the project. He first made a name for himself here in Haverhill, when he started hand-making and selling pasta and sauces in the attic of the Faro family’s bakery in Haverhill. The business took off from there and grew into a specialty pasta and sauce manufacturer and wholesaler. Over the years the business expanded and moved into a 150,000-square foot building on Primrose Street in Haverhill. The business was sold to the Nestle Prepared Foods in 2006.

Faro moved on to the restaurant business when he opened Joseph’s Trattoria in the Ward Hill neighborhood of Haverhill. In 2010, he opened the first Tuscan Kitchen Restaurant in Salem, N.H. That was followed in 2012 with the opening of Tuscan Market next to the restaurant. Two years later he opened another Tuscan Kitchen restaurant in Burlington. If all of the goals of the Tuscan Village project are met on the 170-acre site, it will be one of the largest mixed-use real estate developments in New England.

Architect's renderings of the new Tuscan Villa.

Architect’s renderings of the new Tuscan Villa.

One thought on “Rockingham Park Comes Down; Haverhill’s Link to Its Replacement

  1. It is sad to see Rockingham race track gone forever. Many of our local seniors would meet there daily to socialize and bet a bit on there favorite Horse either from handicapping or based upon a familiar name. It all began with auto racing on a wooden board track. During its long history it hosted many famous names from the field of thoroughbred and harness racing. Some better known names were Trainers Jack Van Berg, Carlos Figueroa, Alan Borosh. Jockeys Willies Shoemaker, , Henry Wajda, , Herbert Hinojosa, Harnessmen Ted Wing, David Ingraham, Bucky Day, and Ken Anderson and his brother Ralph Anderson.
    The new plans submitted by Mr. Faro are proof of his sincerity to build an outstanding facility that will benefit the Town of Salem the state of New Hampshire,and all of the locals that will shop there once it is completed’

    Best wishes to you Mr. Faro