Cocoa Beach Athletes Need Community’s ‘Final Kick’ to Save Track
Some things get better with age. Athletic facilities, as it turns out, are not those things. The track at Cocoa Beach High School has endured 50+ years of neglect, and at this stage, is in full disrepair. In recent years, Brevard Public Schools’ (BPS) budget has been stretched to its breaking point, and has little room to focus on anything other than emergencies. Unfortunately, this moves the upkeep of school athletic facilities to the bottom of the priorities list.
Two years ago, Logan Colangelo — then a senior at CBHS — came to a meeting of the CBHS Cross Country Booster Club with a big idea. He wanted to enlist the club’s help to replace the school’s busted old track. In the days that followed, a coalition of concerned parents and citizens came together to form Get On Track, a nonprofit dedicated to the tall task of track replacement.
The goal was as massive as it was multi-faceted. Track replacement has a hefty price — $450,000. In 2019, the Kiwanis Club of Cocoa Beach, the Booster Club and CBHS administration joined forces to establish the Get On Track Steering Committee. Together, they’ve solicited support from the community through fundraising campaigns and events.
When COVID reared its ugly head in spring of 2020, it threatened to not only derail fundraising efforts, but potentially end the race for good. Much like an athlete training for a race, the committee stayed the course. Endurance and commitment often get the athlete across the finish line.
Late last year, news came that BPS shifted the course for this community cohort. After voters approved the 2020 extension of the half-cent “Save Our Schools” sales tax, BPS was able to designate $250K toward the project. The “last lap” bell of what seemed an impossible race started ringing, and a strong finish had finally begun to feel possible.
Over the years, the CBHS track and field and cross country teams have had an impressively successful run, both locally and at the state level. These student athletes have consistently achieved their sports’ highest honors in competition, only to have to come home to a dangerous, decrepit track. They deserve the support and commitment of their community in this pursuit. The students and athletes of CBHS deserve to have a track as fantastic as the school itself.
This project will serve students now, as they work to establish a foundation of good habits through balancing sports, school, family and friends — and also leave a legacy years into the future, as they hand off the baton to future generations.
About $95,000 is still needed to complete the track upgrade. It’s now time for what runners refer to as the “final kick.” We’re once again reaching out to the community to help. Donations — which are tax-deductible, are sorely needed.
Let’s use logo for Get on Track with this line in a box:
For more information on donating or getting involved, visit cbhsgetontrack.com
Michelle Mulak owns Good Vibrations Creative + Consulting, a boutique marketing, public relations and communications consulting firm based in Cocoa Beach. She works with entrepreneurs, businesses, brands, events and organizations of all sizes to help them develop and implement authentic, effective content marketing, advertising and publicity strategies.
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