MOORESTOWN - A new athletic center is now
under construction at Moorestown High School as part of a $38.1 million
expansion and renovation project on the Bridgeboro Road campus.
Officials are hoping that along with the three full-size basketball
courts, new locker rooms, office space, concession stand and ticket
booth, the center will be able to offer students a state-of-the-art
health and fitness room.
"We want to have a first-class, top-rate cardiovascular fitness
room that will take our physical education program into a new era for
our entire student body," Athletic Director Neil Rosa said.
The center is the final phase of the expansion and renovation project
at the high school. It is scheduled to be completed by late June, so
that it can be used for graduation if the weather forces the ceremony
While the 2,400-square-foot fitness room is being constructed as part
of the athletic center, school district officials are relying on the
generosity of the community to purchase the equipment.
A committee, which includes Rosa, physical education staffers, athletic
coaches and parents, is hoping to raise $200,000 through sponsorships
and private and corporate donations.
Ideally, the equipment could be purchased, installed and ready for students
when the 2006-07 school year starts this fall, Rosa said.
"There are a wide variety of strength and conditioning and cardio
machines that we would like to have," he said. "It's a major
part of our physical education program."
In an effort to stem the epidemic of obesity in the country, the state
Department of Education has directed New Jersey schools to focus their
programs on exercise and fitness.
"We all understand that it is something to be concerned about not
just in this town, but in the state and around the country," Rosa
said. "It's a major part of our curriculum."
The fitness room would also benefit Moorestown's already successful
athletic program, he said. Currently, student athletes only have use
of an "antiquated weight room with free weights and dumbbells."
Rosa also said he envisions the fitness room as a resource for township
senior citizens. He said he would like to develop a community outreach
program to help these residents with their fitness goals.
The committee, formed just before Christmas, will kick off its fund-raising
efforts next week with detailed information posted on the school district
"We want to get this thing off and running fast and furious,"
he said. "We are prayerfully hoping that (the center) will be ready
to open at the start of the school year."
Giving levels start at $100, Rosa said. The committee also has established
an adopt-a-machine program, where an interested donor can buy a specific
piece of equipment.
The donation would be recognized in some way, but the committee has
yet to make a decision on how, Rosa said.