Field of dreams realized: Pajaro Valley High athletic facility unveiled after years of student advocacy
“The fierce advocacy by students, their families and the community have enabled PVHS to overcome countless obstacles and setbacks in the completion of this project,” school board President Jennifer Holm said.
Two years after breaking ground, Pajaro Valley High School’s new athletic field, track and stadium were unveiled Friday in a ribbon-cutting ceremony that lacked the fanfare it would have had in normal times.
A small group of masked people, including Pajaro Valley Unified School District Superintendent Michelle Rodriguez, Watsonville Mayor Jimmy Dutra, school principal Matt Levy, multiple school district trustees and the school mascot, took to the field for the ceremony that was also broadcast live on YouTube.
Pajaro Valley High School opened its doors in 2004. Rodriguez, Leavy and Holm all credited students, alumni and families for getting the $14 million project to the finish line.
“I had students come to my office and say ‘Dr. Rodriguez, do you realize we have to run in the parking lot for PE? Do you realize that we’ve never had a home game in all of the four years that we’ve been at the school? And so being a football mom myself, we knew that we had to make it happen,” Rodriguez said.
PVUSD Board of Trustees President Jennifer Holm said that over years of changing leadership within the school district and school, what had remained constant was “Grizzly pride,” a reference to the high school’s mascot.
“The fierce advocacy by students, their families and the community have enabled PVHS to overcome countless obstacles and setbacks in the completion of this project,” she said. “We are standing here today because you stood for this becoming a reality.”
When the quick ribbon-cutting ceremony was completed, nine Pajaro Valley High School student-athletes took to the track to run a victory lap.