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Students, teachers launch Astro Run at Columbia

A pep rally on Friday will serve as mission launch for the Astro Run at Columbia Elementary School.

Columbia PTA is sponsoring the first annual Astro Run on Oct. 2 as the school’s major fundraiser. Students will ask friends and family for pledges based on completed laps, or supporters can donate a flat fee.

“This year’s theme is ‘Be a Hero’,” PTA president Piper M. Moore said. “We hope to have various community heroes participate at our run. We have invited the mayor, police officers and firefighters to inspire our children to become heroes.”

Also tying in the hero theme, PTA members will write short messages related to character development that will be played each morning in all classrooms.

“Thanks to generous businesses within our community, the PTA anticipates all donations collected by the students will go directly to our school,” Moore said. Thus far, run sponsors are Kumon, The Orthopedic Center, Met Life – Trey Pinegar, Chick-fil-A, ServisFirst Bank, Kami-con and 32 Degrees.

Proceeds will improve technology for Columbia students. “Our number one goal is to add more computers to every classroom,” she said. Columbia principal Mark McCrory hopes each classroom can receive two new computers. “We’re confident that goal can be met through our walk.”

Astro Run is a “fun run … not a race,” Moore said. All 820 Columbia students in grades K-6 will participate.

Students will receive an event T-shirt to wear at the run. Each time, a student passes the start line, a volunteer will mark the shirt back to count laps. Throughout the day, students will run on two ‘tracks’ to avoid overcrowding.

“For several years, we’ve used an outside source to help with (our major) fundraiser, but we were committed to give a percentage of proceeds,” Moore said. “This year, the board voted to put together our own fundraiser (to) keep 100 percent.”

“Parents have been supportive of our cause. Many have already donated several hours to make this endeavor a success,” Moore said. “We encourage all Columbia parents to join the fun on Oct. 2nd and cheer their children on!”

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