Schools hold fitness center grand opening

Mar 08, 2013
Photo by: Lara Feinberg Natalie Boone Leads Ribbon Cutting

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on March 7 to celebrate the grand opening of new fitness rooms at Pisgah High School and Central Haywood High School.

The fitness rooms were developed and funded through the Carol M. White, PEP Grant awarded to the Haywood County Schools. The grant is entitled Mountain R.O.A.D.S. (Reducing Obesity via Activity and Diet for Students) program in 2011.

This three-year, million dollar grant has “enhanced and expanded the county’s physical education and health programs,” stated Haywood County Schools’ PEP Grant Director, Natalie Boone. Boone, a former physical education teacher at Hazelwood Elementary, added “major goals for the grant are to increase student fitness activities, fitness levels, nutrition awareness and decreasing obesity across our county.” The first year of the grant focused on providing new fitness equipment for local schools. The second year has focused on fitness for all students.

Central Haywood High School’s and Pisgah High School’s new fitness rooms house state-of-the-art cardiovascular equipment, including elliptical machines, rowers, upright bikes, recumbent bikes and more. Pisgah High School also selected a cardio ladder which has been highlight on NBC’s "The Biggest Loser."

Both schools selected a multi-gym to complement their cardio equipment. In addition, students at both schools have the opportunity to exercise to Zumba and P90X during their Lifetime Fitness class or after school.

Several members of the community, including local officials were present for the grand opening at Pisgah High School, including Canton’s Mayor Michael Ray and Clyde’s Mayor Jerry Walker. Dr. Anne Garrett, Haywood County Schools Superintendent, spoke at the event and shared appreciation for the grant with other speakers, including Pisgah Principal Greg Bailey, Central Haywood Principal Jeff Haney and Coach Casey Kruk of Pisgah High School. Kruk thanked Boone for her hard work and effort to make the fitness rooms possible for his students.

“We are excited about educating our students for a lifetime of fitness and health,” stated Boone. To learn more about the Haywood County Schools’ PEP Grant Mountain ROADS program, visit