Students Raise Money at Walk-a-Thon

events August 5, 2014 2:15 am

By Francine Fulton

Walk a Thon 1

Third-grade participants in the Walk-A-Thon at St. Joseph School in Downingtown included (from left) Sarah McManamon, Jack Porter and Reaghan Stewart.

Even though the event was moved indoors due to a stormy afternoon, students, teachers and other staff members recently enjoyed a benefit Walk-A-Thon held at St. Joseph School in Downingtown.

The activity, designed for fun and fitness, was also a way for the students to raise money to help continue the school’s technology initiative. “There is a three-year initiative to update the technology in the classrooms by installing a Smart Board in every classroom,” said Colleen Naugle, a member of the school’s home and school association, noting this is the final year of the initiative. “We installed 21 Smart Boards, which are the 21st-century blackboards. There are six or seven more for us to purchase.”

She said that the Home and School Association also purchased new computers that work in conjunction with the Smart Boards and updated the software in the school office.

Prior to the Walk-A-Thon, students were asked to pay a participation fee and to get pledges to raise additional money. “There was a participation fee for every family, and the children went out and got pledges from family and friends, but not (by going) door-to-door,” Naugle said.

Each participant was given a paper sneaker to decorate, and all the sneakers were displayed on a wall at the school. “Once (the students) handed in their participation fee, they got a tag to put on their shoes and a paper sneaker which they cold color. So, we made a wall of sneakers,” she said.

The day of the Walk-A-Thon began with a pep rally held in the school gymnasium. Because of the rain, the students then walked throughout the school, including the gym, through the hallways, upstairs and back down. There were refreshments served in the school cafeteria during the walk, and music was provided by a disc jockey. “We did silly stations in the cafeteria where the children got to do the chicken dance in one area and the limbo,” Naugle said.

All students in the school – over 600 – participated in the event, along with parents and siblings. “The pre-K and the kindergartners did a mini-walk in the morning,” Naugle said, noting that the students raised $17,000 from the pledges. “We exceeded our goal – our goal was $15,000. The generosity of our families is unbelievable.

“There is also a competition among the homerooms,” she added. “Each grade level homeroom that raised the highest amount will get a dress-down day.”

Walk a Thon 2

Over 600 students enjoyed the Walk-A-Thon at St. Joseph School in Downingtown, even though the event was moved indoors due to rain.

St. Joseph School is located at 340 Manor Ave., Downingtown. There are still openings for students in kindergarten and in other grades. To learn more about the school or to arrange a tour, interested readers may call 610-269-8999. More information is also available at

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