More than 500 people turned out Saturday morning for a 5k Run, Kids Mile Fun Run and a Kids 100 Yard Dash to raise funds to support Palm Beach County public schools.
The annual Heroes for Education race took place at Bryant Park in downtown Lake Worth and was hosted by The Education Foundation of Palm Beach County. 100 percent of the proceeds raised will go to Palm Beach County public schools to help better the learning environment of the students and provide teachers with the appropriate tools to unlock students’ potential.
The races were completed by parents, teachers and students from schools around Palm Beach County who believe in advancing students potential by giving them the tools and support they need.
Schools with teams that participated included Acreage Pines Elementary, Equestrian Trails Elementary, Carver Middle School, Emerald Cove Middle School and John I. Leonard High School, among others.
“The reason I enjoy coaching is because I enjoy getting young kids inspired to love running from an early age,” said Kristy Rodgers, the head coach of the Sunshine State Juniors Running Club. “[We] know that if we inspire them to love it at an early age that they’ll probably end up being lifelong runners, which will make them healthier kids and eventually healthier adults.”
While other students might dread physical activity, others appreciated the opportunity to get out with their families and friends.
“I like running because it’s fun and I get lots of energy,” said Julian Mongognia, a six-year-old member of the Sunshine State Running Club.
“It was fun to run with my dad for the first time,” added Henrique Franca, another fifth grader at Equestrian Trails.
At the conclusion of the event, it was announced that $48,800 were raised which would be divided among eligible schools; the top two teams who participated at the event are to be awarded a physical education grant for their schools. Two additional $750 grants will also go to the top fundraising team as well as the top participating team.
“I really enjoyed running with my friends and my mom,” said Nick Melchionna, a fifth grader at Equestrian Trails Elementary School. “Our school has a chance to win money to help our [physical education] program at ETES and PE is my favorite subject.”