Brothers Greg and Mark Jaloszynski (above) know the Hudson Valley. They grew up there, played high school sports there and have been active members of their community, from both a business and coaching standpoint, for decades.
So, when the brothers from Pine Bush realized that their region, not just their religious community, needed a sporting venue that would serve much of downstate New York, they felt compelled to act. What began as an idea morphed into something more tangible and then finally became a reality when the Jaloszynski's broke ground on the 12th Rock Indoor Track Facility in Middletown this past November.
12th Rock is a faith-based, sporting organization that aims to bring sport excellence through traditional values, that include a desire to be intentional about making people feel welcome through built relationships, as well as demonstrating humility, kindness and respect. Their sports programs include basketball, archery, and Track & Field, with the current Outdoor Throwing Facilities playing host to the 2020 World Leading Hammer Throw mark set by Rudy Winkler.
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While construction on the state-of-the-art facility has been slowed by a bad winter and dealing with a pandemic, the brothers remain hopeful that it won't be too long before athletes from New York State and the surrounding states begin to take advantage of their facility and what it has to offer.
"This sprung from community need," Greg Jaloszynski, 46, said. "This is our 20th year running sports programming in the area and we have been renting facilities, primarily for basketball. The local track world, however, is where we need an indoor track facility. There is an enormous need here so we designed it, we showed it to a few people and they said we should go after it and we did."
"We are hoping to open in a year and a half if the money keeps coming in. I would love to say that tomorrow we'll be ready to rock and roll but we're not. We're not trying to borrow a ton of money but now that we have stuck shovels in the ground, everyone seems interested. We broke ground in late November and then the snow hit so we're waiting for snow to melt. We started putting the road entrance in and we're moving onto site work while still raising capital. That's where we are at."
The brothers own a 14-acre piece of property and expect the building to be built over two of those acres. There will be three acres for parking [approximately 635 spots]. When finished, the facility will be able to host state and local track meets. It will feature a 200-meter flat track, two running/jumping lanes and pits, sorts for indoor throws and high jumps as well as being capable of handling pole vaulting.
The site will have 1,200 seats for spectators, media and coaching boxes, full locker room and bathroom facilities as well as a full-service kitchen and mezzanine area in which fans can watch the basketball courts and the track at the same time. Additionally, there will be multi-purpose rooms suitable for group fitness, after-school programs, urban missions and community outreach.
"My brother and I are local guys; we both graduated from Pine Bush and had a lot of friends who ran track & field and they always talked about running at West Point. We're tuned into the family side of sports, though. That's huge for us. It's about family and all you ever hear about West Point track is that people send their kids down there but there is no family experience."
"We did our research in the local track world and they have been trying to get something like this built for the last 15 years. For us, it's about another set of athletes that we can have in front of us and help their families have a great sports experience."
Greg Jaloszynski said he was also motivated by stories from coaches and families who didn't want to have to travel to New York City for a meet because of the cost and logistics. He's also certain that such a facility will be a boost for the local economy as restaurants, coffee shops, gas stations etc. will see a huge jump in business, particularly on meet days.
"I see in the basketball world that when people show up to poorly designed facilities, it just puts everyone in an angry place," Greg Jaloszynski said. "We're trying to design a great experience for the fans. If they are comfortable and have a great experience, they eat and stay longer, and then they will come back for the next invitational. We will take care of all the aspects for them, not just the race. We are here for the whole experience, not to just nickel and dime people."
"We know the kids deserve something better and that's what we're trying to bring to the table. And this is a great setting versus the concrete jungle. It puts you in a great place mentally."
You can find out more on the current state of the project by visiting https://www.12throck.org/future-home