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Making A Difference: Plymouth Elementary students celebrate their achievements with annual Color Run

Making A Difference: Plymouth Elementary students celebrate their achievements with annual Color Run

by Matt Licwinko, PWHS Class of 2024

eight students covered in bright colored powder

Plymouth Elementary recently hosted its annual Color Run event in celebration of the money students raised throughout the school year.

Every year, Plymouth Elementary works with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society by collecting donations from students and families to support pediatric cancer research and families who are battling blood cancer.

The collaboration started over ten years ago as a coin collecting competition between classes, known as “Pennies for Patients”. However, first grade teacher Michelle Weidamoyer came up with a clever idea to make the fundraiser even more enjoyable for the students.

She inspired the color run, a school-wide event celebrating an amazing year of efforts. Every grade in the school takes an assigned time to run laps around a custom made track, lined with signs created by the students during class time. Third grader Braydon Logan told us, “Running through the posters, it gives you a lot of motivation."

Kids running on the field at Plymouth Elementary School

Students are instructed to run, jog, or walk for the duration of the event. During the run, teachers surround the track and spray the participants with colored dust, turning white shirts into artworks. 

First grader McKenzie Jerome emphasized that “It’s fun when you get color all over you, and then you can wear it like a tie-dye shirt."

In just this year alone, Plymouth raised over $14,000 to put towards the foundation. In addition, the school has now officially totaled over $150,000 across all years of the donation efforts.

As part of the competition, the top ten individual students who raised the most money were given the opportunity to slime their principals. The top three fundraising classes will receive parties during the final week of the school year.

Third grader Quinn Hartel put into perspective what it feels like to be a part of such a big, collective effort. She said the most important part of the event to her is, “Knowing that we’re helping a lot of people, and knowing we are probably saving people's lives."

Her words echo the thoughts of countless other students and staff at the school. All in all, she reinforced the point that pushes the students to continue raising donations for a good cause: saying, “It makes me feel good and the person that I’m helping feel good."

To encourage more efforts in the future, Mrs Weidamoyer always makes sure to let students know to “Carry this over to the rest of your years in school, don’t let this end here."

Plymouth Elementary students, teachers, and families have all contributed year after year, and the goal is to get students to take it the same positive energy with them beyond Plymouth.