Two Plainfield elementary schools — Central and Van Buren — hosted at walk-a-thon to replace several school fundraisers. Each school was able to raise more than $12,000 to make their combined total in the area of $25,000.
“And we still have money coming in,” said Jenny Homan with the Van Buren PTO. “It’s amazing what six to 10 moms can do. We just plugged people in where their strengths are.”
The community stepped up and helped with donations such as T-shirts, bottled water, bananas, and goodie bags.
“We were also able to get a DJ,” Homan said. “The kids are having so much fun.”
Jennifer McCoy of Van Buren Elementary School said the event turned out to be a huge success.
“It was a lot of work, but this way we won’t have to nickel and dime the parents all year,” McCoy said. “It was nice to work with the other PTO as well. New friends were made.”
She said the goal is to encourage the PTOs from Brentwood and Clarks Creek elementary schools to hold their own walk-a-thons next year.
“And then the third year we’re hoping to have all the elementary schools end up at the middle school,” she said.
Central Elementary School PTO member Rachelle Naaman said she grew up participating in similar walk-a-thons.
“I grew up at Ritter and we did this,” she said. “I’ve wanted to do this here for a few years.”
Naaman had been involved with PTO at Van Buren for 10 years but had to move to Central during the district’s most recent redistricting project.
“We’ve had great community support and we’re thrilled with how it’s all turned out,” she said.
Students from each grade level met their counterparts at the “start” like and walked a set route around the neighborhood with help from the Plainfield Police Department and Plainfield Fire Department. They then circled back to their respective schools after picking up their snack and goodie bag.
At the end of the event, the fifth-grade classes from both schools had a “get to know you” party outside of Van Buren. The pizza party was also donated by local individuals and businesses.
Those students will be heading to Plainfield Community Middle School in the fall and will soon be classmates.