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Michigan City middle school awarded $100,000 fitness center

Michigan City middle school awarded $100,000 fitness center

Michigan City

Martin T. Krueger Middle School in Michigan City was one of three schools in the state selected to receive a $100,000 state-of-the-art fitness center.

Martin T. Krueger Middle School in Michigan City was one of three schools in the state selected to receive a $100,000 state-of-the-art fitness center.

Gov. Eric Holcomb teamed up with fitness entrepreneur Jake Steinfeld to bring the National Foundation for Governors' Fitness Councils' “DON’T QUIT!” campaign to Indiana.

The fitness centers were awarded to schools that demonstrated leadership in getting students fit and keeping them fit.

Krueger Principal Josh Malone said the school was selected out of hundreds of applicants.

“We had to apply for it, we had to fill out the paperwork and answer questions,” Malone said. “‘Why do you want this, what is it gonna be used for?’”

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Jenny Jones, Krueger’s advanced technology and activities director, put together a three-minute video of students exercising that was required for the application with help from Malone, assistant principal John Boyd and physical education teacher Ryan Labis.

The fitness center will hold 30 pieces of multi-use equipment. Physical education teachers will be able to utilize the center, with students, athletes and staff having access to it, and Krueger plans to use it for community engagement, Malone said.

“It's really important during these stressful times to take care of your bodies and physical and mental wellness,” Malone said.

The fitness center will go into a vacant Krueger classroom, which happens to be the school’s largest.

A representative for the program came out to measure the classroom before installation of flooring and equipment begins Aug. 1.

Krueger’s physical education teachers will be trained on how to use the equipment.

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“We don't have a weight room now,” Malone said. “We have no fitness equipment. The only thing we have are a few free weight dumbbells one of the PE teachers donated.”

The “DON’T QUIT!” campaign awarded centers to schools in Indiana and Kentucky, joining Oklahoma and Alabama as recent states to receive centers. The campaign is trying to donate to all 50 states and has now awarded centers to over 30.

Governor Holcomb will come to Krueger for a ribbon-cutting ceremony when the fitness center opens in the fall, Malone said.

Perry Meridian Middle School in Indianapolis and Southside Middle School in Muncie were also selected. 

Malone said he was shocked when he found out Krueger was selected.

“I was just sitting around and Ryan Labis, the wellness teacher, called me and said ‘You're not gonna believe it but we won.’ I was like ‘No, stop, you’re just joking,” Malone said. “Going into it we knew a ton of schools were going to apply but we just gave it our shot and we got lucky.”

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