Community Rallies around CrossFit Hermitage

Mar 9, 2020 by

In the early morning hours of March 3, a series of tornadoes tore across middle Tennessee leaving a trail of devastation in their wake. As many as 12 tornadoes touched down, including at least one strong F3 in East Nashville and one F4 in Cookeville. Together they caused 25 fatalities, injured another 308 people, caused $93 million in damages and left 73,000 people without power.

A week ago we reported on the complete destruction of CrossFit Hermitage, an affiliate in its ninth-year, owned by Brandi and Tom Forbes. The gym suffered a direct hit by one of the tornadoes and will have to have to rebuild from scratch. It’s important to note that none of the 100+ members of the Hermitage community suffered injuries or property loss.

Here’s what we’ve learned in the days since:

  • The CrossFit Hermitage facility is a total loss. Despite the destruction, affiliate owner Brandi Forbes is looking at the positives. She said, “I know how strong our community is, but to experience the broader community and the way they are offering their support and hard-earned money — it just hits you hard emotionally.”
  • Displaced athletes are working out at surrounding gyms who have opened their doors and offered free classes for the month of March.
  • The Hermitage community met up for a park workout this weekend and ran hill sprints.
  • Brandi Forbes: “We are family and we would do this for others in the community, but to have it happen to us is hard to describe.”

In the days following the storms, the CrossFit community around Nashville and beyond has rallied around the CrossFit Hermitage community, as well as those affected by the storms in Cookeville.

  • Almost immediately, CrossFit Trivium and the Battle of the Barbells scheduled a Tornado Relief Fundraiser, set to take place on April 4. All proceeds from the event will go to CrossFit Hermitage to help them rebuild. More details will be released soon.
  • CrossFit Hermitage started a GoFundMe page to help facilitate their rebuild. As of this moment, they’ve raised over $17k.
  • Barbell VooDoo, the apparel company is offering a limited edition “I Believe in Community” t-shirt, and 100% of the proceeds are going to help rebuild CrossFit Hermitage.
  • On March 21, CrossFit Mt. Juliet will host a “Saturday Showdown” to benefit CrossFit Hermitage. A $20 donation at the door contributes to the Hermitage GoFundMe.
  • On March 28, CrossFit Nolensville will host a raffle to rebuild. The raffle will take place at the 615 Throwdown Competition.
  • Also on March 28, Black Wolf CrossFit in Houston, TX will host a Tornado Recovery Fundraiser. Participants are asked to donate to the CrossFit Hermitage GoFundMe.
  • Supplement company, Edge Fitness Performance organized a fundraiser this past weekend called “Burpees for Tornado Relief.”

The Cookeville community has also rallied in the aftermath of the storms. CrossFit Mayhem did not suffer damage from the storms but has taken the lead in fundraising for the relief efforts in the area.

  • CrossFit Mayhem has started a t-shirt fundraiser to benefit relief efforts in Cookeville, TN and the surrounding area and is using the hashtag #cookevillestrong.  
  • On March 13, CrossFit Mayhem is hosting a Cookeville Strong lifting event at its main facility.
  • On March 14, CrossFit Mayhem is hosting a second event in Murfreesboro at Oakland High School. All proceeds from the event go to tornado relief.

We will continue to keep you up to date on developments and ways to contribute.


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