Mount Airy High School is set to host the second annual Granite City Lift-Off on Saturday.
The weightlifting competition includes students from Mount Airy, North Surry, East Surry and Surry Central.
The lift-off will consist of 10 weight classes, and each school can bring two lifters per weight class. The events will include bench press, squat, power clean, and a CrossFit component.
“Student-athletes are constantly being pushed to add weight training to their offseason schedule,” Mount Airy physical education teacher Jonathan Wilmoth said. “Few people ever get to see the kind of work that is done in the weight room. These student-athletes spend countless hours training in the weight room, and for the most part, all the community gets to see is an hour and a half game.
“The byproducts of strength and conditioning maybe considered natural to the spectator, but in reality it comes due to personal diligence.”
Wilmoth, an assistant football and baseball coach with the Granite Bears, said when he started the event last year he wanted to do something to enhance spring workouts for the school. Wilmoth consulted with former Mount Airy assistant football coach Chris Johnson, now the head football coach at Forbush.
While the event draws its fair share of football guys, Wilmoth said several sports are represented.
Participants will compete for individual awards (first, second, third place), and a trophy will also be awarded to the school that accumulates the most points on the day. Mount Airy won the team competition in the inaugural event last year. Soccer player Victor Solis of Surry Central won the “iron kid” title last year.
When guys come in here, they want to beat the other school but by the end of the day, you’ll have big-time rivalry schools are pulling for one another,” Wilmoth said.
The Crossfit component will be slightly different this year — with more of a team-oriented approach.
Competition gets under way Saturday at 10 a.m. on the track at Mount Airy High School. Tickets are $3 per person, $5 per couple, or $7 per family. The Dairy Center will cater the event, and there will also be sandwiches provided from Chick-fil-A. T-shirts will also be sold. Proceeds go toward the strength and conditioning program at Mount Airy High School.
“We are hoping to continue to make it an annual event,” Wilmoth said. “The community is always coming to watch these sporting events, basketball, wrestling, soccer. We are encompassing all the sports. These kids are asked by their coaches to put hours upon hours into strength and conditioning, and nobody ever gets to see it pay off. This is a great way to let them show off what they’ve achieved in the weight room.”