Emma Enoch, a kindergartner at Our Lady of Grace School, didn't totally understand the concept behind her school's Race for Education. But she knew she got to run around outside instead of sitting in a classroom on a warm October 24 morning.
She joined her brother, Jack, a second-grader and her third-grade sister, Caroline, as they ran laps around the school's soccer field. The students wore index cards on their wrists that were hole-punched after each quarter-mile lap.
"Last year Emma ran one lap," said her father, Joe Enoch, as he filmed his three children. "This year, she says she'll do eight."
He said the kids each sent out letters to neighbors and relatives asking for a donation to the fundraiser. In exchange, they vowed to run for one hour.
The goal of the school's Race for Education was to raise $10,000 to purchase a WeatherBug weather system for the school. So far, the students and their families have raised $19,000.
Devon Strozyk and Ella Tankersley, both eighth-graders who are on the school's cross-country team, helped all runner do warm-up exercises before the run. By the time the event was over, Devon ran 36 laps and Ella did 28.
"The kids have been really excited about this," said Our Lady of Grace pastor, Rev. Sam Young. "This makes them feel like they are involved and they're accomplishing something. Plus, they're getting exercise on a beautiful day."
This is the second year for the Parkton school to hold a run/fundraiser. And it was the second time principal Byrdie Ricketts showed up in costume.
Her angel costume featured wings with gold glitter, a white halo and a long white robe. Sneakers poked out the bottom, since she accompanied the kids as they took laps.
"This weather station will give us on-site conditions and the data can be spread throughout the network to the classrooms," Ricketts said. "We'll even get lightning alerts and you can download a free WeatherBug app on your cell phone. We're excited about it."