With the Bryan County Board of Education approval Thursday evening of the $303,000 revitalization of the Richmond Hill High School running track, the RHHS Cross Country/Track & Field Boosters has announced the start of their capital campaign: Richmond Hill Athletic Project (RHAP).
“We couldn’t be more pleased and thankful to the BOE for the agreement to rubberize the track” said RHHS Coach Levi Sybert. “The Board and high school administration has worked with us and really listened to our needs.”
But Sybert’s vision is more than just a rubberized track. His hope is that the full facility will include a cross country running trail and a field house/pavilion. With the current facilities, the cross country and track teams have little opportunity to compete at home and have been forced to travel to nearly every meet they compete in. This takes up valuable time from the classroom as well as not providing any opportunities for the athletes to compete in front of friends, family and classmates at “home.” The asphalt track is also not very forgiving on the body and training programs have to be altered for the runners, to minimize injury.
The booster club says it are ready and willing to take on the commitment to raise funds for the other two parts of the project. The boosters have been putting their vision together for the past year, and plan to kick off their campaign on Monday evening at the RHHS Link. Their work over the summer has already provided them with an opportunity to secure land use for the cross country trail and the local running company, Georgia Game Changers, has donated truckloads of dirt that has already been delivered to the school, for the making of a hill for the trail.
While the project will definitely benefit other RHHS programs like JROTC Raiders, PE classes, and other sports programs that run for conditioning, the boosters want to see the facility benefit the entire Richmond Hill and South Bryan community.
“Imagine the benefit to our children if we were able to provide recreational running programs over the summer, said booster Colette Hammesfahr. “Think about if Richmond Hill had the opportunity to host national events like the Special Olympics or AAU national track or cross country championships. The opportunities for runners in our city and county are endless and the opportunity to host special events will put Richmond Hill on the running community map.”
The boosters and Coach Sybert also have plans that will surely bring schools from as far away as Atlanta.
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