By Marjorie Woodfin

Pilot staff writer

In a small town like Brookings it's hard to believe that a secret can actually be kept for several weeks.

At the Brookings City Council meeting of Oct. 27, it was proven that such a thing can happen when Beverly Rose was presented with a League of Oregon Cities 2008 Fitness Leadership Award.

Brookings Mayor Larry Anderson was notified about the award in a letter from Brad Anderson of Oregon Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports dated Sept. 15.

Brad Anderson included in the letter, andquot;Please note that we have not notified your award recipient about the award. We prefer to leave it up to each mayor to decide how best to recognize award recipients. We suggest that you recognize the awardee at your local city council meeting.andquot;

Anderson was originally prepared to present the award to Rose at the Oct. 11 council meeting, however she was ill, and the presentation was postponed until the next meeting.

Was she surprised? It was evident to all attendees in the meeting room, when Rose gasped as the announcement was made.

Brian Hodge, principal of Kalmiopsis Elementary School, said about keeping the secret so well, andquot;I don't think it's ever been done before. Larry Anderson told me not to tell anyone, and I told her a little white lie to get her there. She is so deserving.andquot;

Rose, who has been teaching physical education at Kalmiopsis for more than 20 years, doesn't limit herself to that activity only. According to Hodge, after all those years, andquot;Her enthusiasm is as high as ever, and she does so much more for the school and the community.andquot;

Former Brookings Harbor Superintendent of Schools Chris Nichols, who was instrumental in seeking the award for Rose, wrote about her, andquot;One thing consistent with Ms. Rose is her love for her health and the health and fitness of those around her, both students and adults.andquot;

Helpful activities Nichols listed include, bringing the andquot;Brain Gymandquot; concept to the classroom, working with teachers in identifying struggling students and implementing remedial PE class, providing Fitness Club and line dancing classes after school, developing the PRIDE club for a service and leadership group of third and fifth grade students, serving on a variety of Oregon Department of Education state committees in reviewing and developing standards for Oregon, and serving as liaison between the district and community for health fairs.

In addition to those activities, and many others, according to those who know her best, just knowing her is a privilege and she is considered a wonderful role model for living a healthy life filled with physical activity in the fight against obesity.

Rose has been honored in the past with recognition and awards, including the University of Oregon Alumni Award of andquot;Outstanding Physical Educator.andquot;

All who have worked with Rose in school or community activities seem to agree with Nichols, who wrote, andquot;We are fortunate to have her in our school and community.andquot;