Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Fun Run

School fundraisers have gotten a little boring. Students selling wrapping paper, magazines, popcorn, cookies, candy, the list goes on and on and on...and most of the time they have no interest in what they're selling and/or couldn't care less about raising money for their schools.

Fundraising is changing, however, and in the best possible way.

Will's elementary school tried out a new fundraiser this year - a "Fun Run" put on my a company called Boosterthon - and the entire process was fantastic. The 10-day experience began with an enormous kick-off pep rally, hosted by Boosterthon staff members (picture the most energetic, enthusiastic, and diverse early-20-something college graduates); revolved around fitness, leadership, and character; taught integrity, honesty, and caring through daily lessons; and culminated in an exciting and inspirational run on the final day. Seriously, it was awesome.

The one hiccup for us was the weather. It rained - for the first time in over a month - on the day of our fun run, so organizers set up the equipment (we're talking inflatable tunnels, a serious sound system, flags, and banners) in our gym. This made for a much more crowded and probably more chaotic experience than we would have had if we'd been outside, but boy, did we have fun.

Here are a few photos from our morning:
Lap talliers, reporting for duty. I'm in the middle in shorts and yellow kicks.
Volunteers counted laps for each student by making tallies on their backs as
they ran by. (The kids had huge stickers with 35 - the maximum number
of laps allowed - little boxes on it stuck to the backs of their shirts).
Receiving our marching orders from a Boosterthon team member. I look
bored, but I swear I wasn't - I must have just been listening intently.
First graders, lined up and ready to listen sing the National Anthem.
There's my little blond boy in a sea of brunettes.
Hallie and Tom cheered Will on from the sidelines.
Once the kids started running we tallied at a rate of approximately 25 tally
marks a minute for 20 minutes; then we'd take a 10-minute break and do it all
over again. And again. It was intense and exhausting and so much fun...and my
knees, and front and back core muscles were embarrassingly sore the next day.
You'd be sore too if you held this position - while twisting and
turning to catch kiddos as they ran by - for three 20-minute rounds.
Giving Will a tally. He reached 35 laps with about two
minutes to go, so he threw in a couple of extra cool-down
laps to bring his final (unofficial) number of laps to 37.

And a few videos as well:

Warming up and getting excited.

Because of the limited space, they broke the runners into grades and then again into 
genders. The first grade girls ran first, and this video gives a glimpse into the chaos.

And then the boys were off! If you look closely, you 
can see Will come to me for one of his first tallies.

Most of the laps were "theme" laps - this one was the limbo lap.

Here are the boys as they crank out their last couple of laps, cheered 
on by the high school cheerleaders and the high school mascot.

The Boosterthon Fun Run was an absolute blast, for the kids and for adults, and along the way the kids raised thousands of dollars for their school! Success!

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