Beulah cuts ribbon on new weight room and surprise announces new athletic facility

Published 1:59 pm Wednesday, December 13, 2023

While several schools are winding down and preparing for Christmas break, Beulah High School used Wednesday to announce several groundbreaking changes to its program. 

The Bobcats held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new and improved weight room on Wednesday. After the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Principal Adam Johnson surprised those in attendance by announcing and breaking ground on a brand-new Athletic Complex. 

The complex will include a completely new football field and stadium to go along with a brand new track and field facility. 

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Coming into the week, those around the program knew that there was going to be a new track and field facility, but the new football field came as a complete surprise to most, including Beulah football coach Matt Johnson. 

The conversations had been stirring around the building of a completely new athletic complex, but Adam Johnson finally got it approved last week. 

“The conversation was there, but the answer wasn’t there,” Johnson said. 

The renovations done inside the new weight room were huge in itself. In total, the costs to renovate the training facility costs in the ballpark of $175,000. Most of those costs were covered by anonymous donors. 

“We’ve got a lot of friends of our community,” Johnson said. “Beulah is a special place. We’ve got a lot of people out there that are hungry and want to go to work just like our kids and our staff.”

It’s hard to imagine anyone being more excited about the changes than Rusty Arnett, Beulah’s strength and conditioning coach. 

Arnett runs workouts for all the athletes at Beulah High School. Those ages range from seventh through twelfth grade and amount to roughly 203 athletes. 

“We go from 12 to 14 racks,” Arnett said. “The extra width, we can have more people in here. It’s more efficient. We’re able to do our agilities and stuff in here much better than we were.”

The renovations to the weight room and the future building of the new athletic facility are all thanks to the overall improvement of Beulah High School. 

Just over the past two years, Beulah has seen several of its teams secure playoff berths and improve from where the teams had been in the past. Over the past year, Beulah has also seen its graduation rate rise from 76% to 93%, and the school has been able to hire more full-time teachers and provide more programs like dual enrollment. 

Along with the academic and athletic improvements, Beulah has also made improvements to all of its facilities. The school has an entirely new roof, new lunchroom tables and several upgrades have been made to the band room along with social media upgrades. 

“It’s a reflection,” Johnson said. “I see the school as one program. We talk about athletic programs, I see a school as an entire program. I’ve always believed in hard work, and I’ve always believed in rewarding those that work. 

“I started coaching in 1999, and I haven’t been around a staff and teachers that work as hard as the staff we have here. It’s because of them, they deserve it.” 

The new athletic facility will have upgrades such as newer seating, full LED lighting, upgraded visitor facilities and much more. 

Neither of the two will take much credit, but a lot of credit is due to Principal Johnson and Assistant Principal Haleigh Johnson. 

“If we didn’t have support from the administration we’d still be in the other weight room,” Arnett said. “It’s them. The administration is very high on the kids working out. Adam and Haleigh both have done a lot to help us with this.” 

“When this was brought out today, it just really shows how aligned our visions are,” Beulah coach Matt Johnson said. “They’ve supported us from day one.”

The new weight room rivals any weight room in the county, and it is likely one of the nicer weight rooms in 3A. Arnett has always been enthusiastic about his job at Beulah, but his excitement has never been higher than it is right now. 

“I love it,” Arnett said. “I love it, and the kids love it. The kids are more excited right now. Really, for me, it’s about how do we maintain that fire because eventually the new wears off and they get tired, but we’ve got to keep them rolling.”

With the new athletic facility comes new expectations. Beulah’s football and track teams have seen a large improvement this season, but both programs look to strive for more in the future. 

“Now, we’ve got to win,” Matt Johnson said. “We said our goal last year was to make the playoffs and now we’ve got to go to the next step.”

The support of the Beulah community has overwhelmed all of those involved. The school has received a plethora of donations and other support for the renovations done to the weight room and the future renovations within the program. 

“It makes it fun,” Adam Johnson said. “The support that was offered is unmatched anywhere I’ve been. They deserve this. They deserve what we have coming in the future.”