Moorestown High School Expands
February 1, 2006
By DANIELLE CAMILLI Burlington County Times


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 inside.
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 Web site.
"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.

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