By CARA LORELLO
Say goodbye to the usual candy and catalogue fundraiser sales, because this year, Hallett Elementary is running for its money.
On the afternoon of May 24, students in grades four through six will take part in a one-mile run through Medical Lake to raise money for the school's student body in the first-ever Wow Now “Fund” Run—formerly the Wow Now Fun Run, an activity the district's elementary schools have typically done as a recreational tradition at the end of every school year, but never before in a fundraising capacity.
The school officially started its fundraising on May 14 after students were sent home the previous week with information packets on how families can donate (all amounts accepted) to the fund run from now until the May 24.
The idea to turn the annual run into a main fundraiser for the student body, Hallett principal Dan Mueller said, came after faculty and PTSO officers decided it was time for a change from using the traditional catalogue sales students have done in recent years.
“We did a survey during last year's parent-teacher conferences about doing this instead of having a merchandise fundraiser,” Mueller said.
“I'd heard from parents that a lot of the items that were featured in the catalogues we were using were quite expensive, and though they felt bad about spending money on things they didn't really need, they still felt they should in order to support the school.”
“I know that other schools had also been successful in dong this kind of thing,” he added of the fund run and how both Medical Lake and Cheney Middle Schools have used similar events.
The school hopes to reach $10,000 in the fundraiser, and every $5 donation a student turns in, their name will be written on a ticket that will go into a daily drawing for a prize between now and May 24.
The students at each grade level who donate the most money will be eligible to receive some bigger prizes, which include a nine-inch DVD player, five-disk player, a boom box, the grand prize being an iPod.
The school has been successful in securing a grant from the Washington Education Association for the purchase of designing T-shirts for the event, which students will receive with a $25 donation.
The school has also received generous donations from local businesses, including Westside Pizza, Sterling Savings Bank, Denny's Harvest Foods and others.
Mueller said the school feels confident that all money donated to the Fund Run will profit the student body.
“Our PTSO officers have really gotten behind organizing this whole thing,” he said. “This will pretty much be our big fundraiser for the year, so we hope it will be successful.”
Cara Lorello can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org