Fun run raises money for Kensington technology

Feb. 14, 2013 @ 02:23 PM

Students at Kensington Elementary ran around the gym at full speed for their largest annual fundraiser. 

Wednesday was their fifth annual Boosterthon Fun Run fundraiser.

The students collect pledges for every lap they run. The most they can run is 35. In the past, the fundraiser has raised more than $20,000 and Principal Rachel Clarke thinks this year will be the same, if not more. 

"We have always used (the proceeds) for technology," Clarke said. 

This year, most of the money will be used to provide the Kindergarten class with Promethean boards. They are the last grade level without them. 

A team from Boosterthon, the company that runs the event, comes to the school every year to run the event. Before the actual run, the team provides character education in the classrooms by teaching kids about historical figures and the traits they had.

"(The) group is really emphatics about building group character," Clarke said.

Clarke said the students get excited when members of the Boosterthon team appear in the school. 

"It's almost like a tradition here," she said. 

Mark Norman, the city leader for the Charlotte Metropolitan Area for Boosterthon, has been to Kensington every year since the inaugural fun run. 

"We try to build relationships with the staff and students," Norman said. 

The team, many of whom live locally, spend more than 300 hours in each school. 

"We're not just doing a fundraiser, we try to build partnerships," Norman said. 

Norman hopes the children have a great experience at the event, realize fitness can be fun and realize they can help their school. 

"Our vision is to change the world," Norman said. Boosterthon believes they can do that with fitness and schools. 

The students often earn prizes. This year, one of the prizes is a miniature basketball hoop. For each student who earns one, another is given to a child in a hospital.

Clarke said the experience helps to show them they can help the school and each other. 

"It's just such a great experience for the kids," she said. "(It) picks everyone's spirit up."