If you saw a rainbow cloud rising over East Robeson Primary School this weekend, it was not raining water, but color.
More than 400 students, family and community members signed up to attend the schools First Annual Color Run.
Six-year-old Nathan said the color run was the best fundraiser ever. The first-grader says he likes sports and hopes to do the color run again soon. “It was pretty fun because I got color all over me. I ran through color and my mom looked like a rainbow,” he said.
Eight-year-old Briana ran through the mile with her friend, but was not ready to lose the color.
“When I got home, I was apparently a green smurf. It was fun that I got to run around with family and friends and was colored to look like a rainbow at the same time. After the run, I walked down the road to show off the color to my neighbors and friends,” Briana said.
Seventy-five percent of the school’s student population turned out to run or walk on Saturday. The color run was a one-mile track run around the school. Along the way, participants ran or walked through five color stations where staff members threw color on them.
Hannah Baffaro, East Robeson’s P.E. teacher, coordinated the event. It is believed to be the first for the school district.
“I was trying to get the families involved with the kids and the community. Obesity is high in this county and we were trying to think of a way we could get everyone involved in fitness. I think everyone had a good time. I think with incorporating color that they really were not thinking about walking, but it was just a good time,” she said Baffaro.
After the race, the fun continued with other activities for the students. Five-year-old Mason said he loved the color run, but the waterslide was the best part.
“I didn’t even need a bath when I went home because it washed off on the waterslide,” Mason said.
The color run raised $3,300 for East Robeson Primary. Principal Kristy West says the proceeds will go back into instructional programs at the school.
“It was a wonderful community day for our school to be able to come together; staff, students and parents. They enjoyed the run, food, slide, bouncy house, train ride, face painting and even pictures. I do call it an event because there was not just one winner of the race. Everyone who participated was a winner. Everyone on the staff was very excited and the participation was so great from our staff,” West said.
West hopes that the excitement for such an event will make students want to do other healthy activities. Seven-year-old Micah may change his favorite sport from basketball to running.
“It was awesome! I was covered in color from my head to toes in yellow, blue, green and pink. Running the mile was hard, but it was fun. I am ready to do it again,” he said.
Tommy Lowry is the superintendent of the Public Schools of Robeson County.