BROOKSVILLE — The 20-year-old gymnasium at Hernando Christian Academy needed a facelift. Untold numbers of balls hitting the ceiling had punched holes in the insulation. The place needed a thorough cleaning.
So, the students, staff and parents recently rolled up their sleeves and dug in.
The school's athletic director and director of community relations, Mike Drummond, maintenance director Wayne Baldwin and his assistant Myk Heald repaired the ceiling's holes with help from head volleyball coach Stacy Hethorn's husband, George Hethorn, and parent Todd Klukowski.
The girls junior varsity and varsity volleyball teams cleaned the Lion's Den, as the gymnasium is known, during a supervised sleepover. The students enjoyed pizza and snacks while they worked.
They cleaned baseboards and dusted chair rails. They swept and cleaned under and over the bleachers.
They made welcome signs to display when visiting teams arrive for games. The girls also bought and donated a new clock, which was hung to replace a broken one.
"We're so pleased with what the girls did for our gym," Drummond said.
The updating came in the form of a new scorer's table, made and donated by parents Todd and Jen Klukowski, Mark and Kathy Young, Andy Frazier and George and Stacy Hethorn.
Maintenance director Baldwin prepared a place for the table before it arrived, securing chair rails to the walls to prevent damage. The table is fronted with plexiglass, lit from within and features a Hernando Christian Academy graphic designed by seventh-grader Kelly Klukowski.
The panels enclosing the sides have cut-out crosses illuminated by the internal lighting.
A marine vinyl bumper covers the table's edges to protect players and table.
"It is a big improvement to the Lion's Den," said coach Hethorn.
Drummond has been delighted with the efforts put forth by so many to make the gymnasium look good. "It's just the difference between night and day from last year," he said.