The School Board of Alachua County approved a consent agenda with a special thank-you for a donation on Tuesday. The Hawthorne Hornets received 60 new all-white football helmets for the upcoming season on Aug. 3, donated by the Jacksonville Jaguars and Gatorade.
According to the acknowledgment letter in the agenda, the helmets donated to Hawthorne Middle/High School are worth about $29,999.40.
A video on social media shows the team cheering and clapping as they walk into a gym to be greeted by the Jaxson de Ville mascot, a table full of Gatorade giveaway bags, and eight neat rows of helmets laid out on the floor.
Dustin Adkins, Hawthorne’s athletic director, said he had originally been talking with the Jaguars at the end of the 2022/23 school year about donating used football cleats and gloves, but the Hornets coaches were thinking of buying new helmets and the Jaguars wanted to help out.
“I’ll never be able to thank the Jaguars and Gatorade enough for this blessing and it is truly awesome to partner with these organizations and make our dreams a reality,” Adkins said in an email. “Top notch program all the way around and they gained a fan for life for how they put forth resources to the youth, especially Hawthorne High School.”
—With reporting from Mike Ridaught