BY JEN CARDINES
“Drum roll please,” Plantsville Elementary students yelled last Friday afternoon. “This year’s total is… $3,869.”
After rescheduling twice due to snow storms, Plantsville fifth graders were finally able to hold the seventh annual Fox-a-Thon on Friday, Feb. 24 in the school’s auditorium-cafeteria.
The event is similar to the HUSKYTHON, held each year at the University of Connecticut. Students raise money for Connecticut Children’s Medical Center every year by dancing together after school.
Fifth grade teacher Sandy Chavez has coordinated the event each year since it was spearheaded, and gives the majority of the responsibility to the students. The fifth graders form accounting, video, music, public relations, and dance committees to make the event a success.
Students worked together to contact the media, count donation money, make promotional videos and posters, create a non-stop music playlist, and coordinate morale dances to keep their peers going while they danced for 90 straight minutes. They even recruited the fourth grade class to get everyone excited for the event.
“I’ve never seen a year where so many students are actually out dancing,” said Chavez, “and I credit that to the music group and the dancing groups for the playlists and the dance.”
Fourth graders are invited to dance during the event, but the project is solely for the fifth grade class. They begin in the fall with a visit from a representative from HUSKYTHON. When the fundraising is completed, Plantsville gives the money to HUSKYTHON toward their total.
“Every bit of that goes back to CCMC,” said Chavez.”
Participants had more time to raise money when the snow pushed the event back,, and they even saw four donations come in just hours before the dancing began. Chavez said that the total amount was a little bit less than last year, but it is the second highest amount they’ve ever raised.
Knowing that her students would be disappointed, Chavez took the stage after the big reveal.
“You just added $3,869 more dollars to the experience at CCMC, and you should be so proud of yourselves,” she said. “The amount of money that you raised – that you danced for – is phenomenal.”
Fifth grade student Matt Pappalardo then took the microphone to address his peers.
“We came here to donate money and we are dancing for those kids that cannot dance,” he said. “It’s a good cause to donate money to those kids.”