Watch out, Loveland Indians and Poudre Impalas — a new rival is coming to Northern Colorado in 2022.

It will be Wellington's first high school, and while the name has not been determined yet, the building will prevent local students from having to travel up to 14 miles to attend school in Fort Collins.

The building will also offer a new middle school, which will replace the current Wellington Middle School.

The project was first approved as part of a $375 million bond in 2016, and will now begin construction.

Local leaders and students alike celebrated the news on Monday (December 9) with a groundbreaking ceremony at Wellington Middle School.

Dr. Sandra Smyser, Superintendent of Poudre School District, addressed the crowd under the school's historic arches.

Dr. Smyser addresses the crowd about the future of Wellington's education.

"This is the history that we bring forward into the future," said Smyser. "It's so exciting to take a cherished past and make it an unbelievable...future."

While the ceremony could not take place at the actual construction site due to muddy conditions, board members, construction workers, and the new high school's future graduating class all took part in "digging in" to the future.

The future 2026 graduating class of the new high school "breaks ground" at Wellington Middle School.

Some, including Poudre School District's Board of Education President Christophe Febvre, were initially hesitant about such a big change in the community.

However, after reviewing plans for the new school, those worries have quickly turned into excitement.

"Congratulations to launching something so vital and so deserving of this community," said Febvre of the school, which will hold approximately 1,500 students.

The floor plan for the new school, which will be about 247,500 square feet.

Wellington Mayor Troy Hamman remarked that the new school was designed with the thoughts and needs of its future students in mind.

Mayor Troy Hamman sports a Wellington sweater while addressing the crowd.

"It is a milestone event that will enrich the lives of thousands of kids and their families," said Hamman. "The student body and the town will witness and live this experience together."

No mascot has been selected yet, but many have joked that it should be Wellington, the black-footed ferret noted for gracing Frontier's airplanes.

Not the worst idea...