Tuesday, October 13, 2015

My School Color Run raises money for school supplies - By Jim Beers

On what was an absolute perfect Maine autumn day last Sunday, the Raymond Elementary School, (RES), held it's first "My School Color Run" to help benefit students and teachers with school supplies at RES. Along with a silent auction, as well as plenty of refreshments, the school's soccer field was a hive of activity before the start of the race. Approximately 240 walkers, joggers and runners of all abilities took to the starting line in hopes of making a difference for the school and its supply needs.

Event organizer and RES teacher Susan Cherner-Brackett was overwhelmed by the number of participants. "Just a perfect day today and to see so many of the community here to lend a helping hand is truly amazing! We are just so excited by the turnout," she said. It did seem that most of Raymond/Windham was there to either help with the event or be a part of it in some way. The Raymond PTO was there with a great refreshment table, and a host of local businesses donated items for the silent auction. 

The event kicked off sharply at 1 p.m., and it wasn't long before the first competitors navigated the 1-mile course and started to cross the finish line. The race was held on the school's property, starting on the soccer field, then moved to wooded trails before ending up back on the field. So many volunteers lined the course to help out with water, snacks, and of course--spraying the participants with color as they went through the "splash zones". With ages ranging from pre-school kids to grandparents, fun was had by all who were there to participate. 

Top three finishers were seventh grader Boden Sabasteanski, seventh grader Keegan Brooks, and third grader Carter Engelman. Top female finisher was seventh grader Molly Cochrane. Once all competitors completed the course, there were plenty of treats and well-wishers on hand to greet them at the finish line. 

After announcing the top finishers, Cherner-Brackett directed everyone to the middle of the soccer field to throw their color packet into the air. On the count of three, the area and everyone in it was immersed in a cloud of color. RES assistant principal Deb Hutchinson was overjoyed by the turnout.
"So wonderful to see the whole community come together for this event. The funds will go to materials for our classrooms and teachers,...just fills my heart, couldn't have been a better day," she said. 

The event raised $3,300.00. 

"Such a successful day, what a great community event. A big thank you goes out to all our volunteers from the Raymond/Windham community, as well as all the local businesses who donated for the silent auction, they truly made this event happen," added Cherner-Brackett. The hope is to do it bigger and better in the future.

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