Elementary school students in Sandwich laced up their running shoes on Monday, November 4, to raise money for, among other things, a holiday Giant for the Forestdale School.

Students from preschool through 6th grade ran, walked and danced around a course marked by colored cones on the athletic fields at both Forestdale and the Oak Ridge schools. Last week, students asked friends, family and business to make financial contributions to their run, hosted by Boosterthon.

The combined goal for the schools was to raise $45,000 and as of Tuesday, November 5, they were 93 percent of the way there. The organizers of the run said that the schools were so close that they were going to keep the fundraising website (https://funrun.boosterthon.com/a/s/UIl53pQD) open for an additional week to help get them to their goal.

On the day of the run, students were met with sunny skies and cool temperatures. As they walked out to the track, each class was greeted by a Boosterthon representative cheerleader—”Zig Zag” Zach at Forestdale and “Pumped Up” Paul at Oak Ridge.

During each running session, students had about one hour to run as many laps as they could. A large sticker each runner wore on his or her back was marked at the end of each lap to keep track. Even though donations were capped at 35 laps, some of the students managed to run more than 40 laps.

Periodically, the runners were reminded to grab a cup of water or encouraged to slow down and walk through a lap. The fun runs’ facilitators also provided the runners with dance breaks.

By the end of the day, students ran an average of two miles.

With the money raised, Forestdale will be able to offset the costs of a holiday Giant that will stand outside the school’s entrance during the holiday season to become a part of the town’s annual display. Principal Christopher Dintino said that he has been talking to creator Michael Magyar about the design. Forestdale is currently the only school in town that does not have one of the lit sculptures.

The school will also use the funds to help finish an outdoor classroom on the property, which will be located in the center of the school’s bus loop—an area that is generally closed to vehicle traffic during the school day.

At Oak Ridge, the money they raised will be used to purchase basketball hoops and to offset the cost of new technology purchases.

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