THS weights move to west campus
The Tonganoxie High School weight room is in a new location this year.
The weight room, which used to be in the fieldhouse next to Beatty Field, is now at the THS west campus. It is located where the industrial arts shop used to be at the former junior high school. More recently, it served as the THS art room for the spring 2007 semester.
Maintenance staff employees and student workers moved equipment from the former weight room to the new room during the summer. It took about a week.
The cost was minimal because the new room already existed from the junior high.
The weight room will be finalized within a month. It's currently suitable for lifting, but has minor work to be done.
The primary reason for the weight room's change of location was to preserve the students' safety, according to THS athletics director Brandon Parker. The Chieftains were in the former weight room for seven years.
"There was a lot of walking that took place," Parker said. "That was a longer walk that was unsupervised."
In fact, THS principal Jamie Carlisle tracked the route in his car from the west campus to the old weight room. He clocked .34 miles one way.
"That's a long walk to and from the high school," Carlisle said. "We get bad weather. It rains, snows, sleets, it's wet, it's hot. It's a pretty good trek."
Carlisle said it would take five adults standing outside at all times to properly supervise the route from the high school to the former weight room.
In the event of rain or snow, students will have a considerably shorter walk to the new room. Some might not have to even step outside.
"There's also better storage areas in the new weight room," Parker said. "There's adequate lockers for males and females. There's easier access to the west gym. But the main perk is that it's in the building. That's number one."
Students in strength training classes will occupy the weight room for the majority of the day. Summer weights also will be held at the new facility.
With respect to the former weight room, the maintenance staff and student workers took out a wall that separated two rooms during the summer for reasons of expansion. The former weight room will now be used for indoor sports activities and will also serve as the area for visiting football teams.
"Even the (THS) football team can use that area when it rains," Parker said. "It's a big enough space to get some work done when Mother Nature doesn't allow it outside."