Whittier, CA – Racing through a sludgy obstacle course and getting pelted with super-squirters, hundreds of Aeolian Elementary K-6 students shrieked in delight during the second annual Aeolian Mud Run fundraiser on Oct. 21. The event raised over $12,000 to support school programs and increase technology in classrooms.
Aeolian kindergarten student Mireya Bautista was recognized as the school’s top fundraiser after she and her family helped raise $660. Bautista was awarded a $100 Visa gift certificate and the honor of running the first race with Aeolian principal Becky Speh and Los Nietos Superintendent Jonathan Vasquez. Speh and Bautista crossed the finish line together.
“This is such a fun event. The kids love it, the parents really support it and it gives our faculty and staff a chance to connect with the community,” Speh said. “I want to thank our Parent Teacher Club president David Vega for coordinating the volunteers and to all of our community sponsors. Everyone gets a little dirty, but it’s well worth it.”
The top fundraiser was the kindergarten class of Jennifer Kotsios, which raised $1,200. The group will display the Aeolian Mud Run trophy in their class for the rest of the year, as well as host a dance party. Sixth-grader Max Avdalyan and kindergartner Alex Murrieta were the second- and third-place fundraisers, respectively, and both received gift certificates.
Aeolian parent Octavio Davis acted as emcee and encouraged the students – many of whom ran alongside their parents – to navigate their way through haystacks, mud pits, bouncy slides, wall jumps, tires and a slip ‘n’ slide. Parent volunteers were waiting to douse them with garden hoses. The students enjoyed the run so much that many did multiple trips through the course.
The mud run is part of the District’s Healthy Los Nietos program aimed at curbing childhood obesity and championing nutrition. Last year’s event raised nearly $12,000 and will be combined with this year’s total to purchase electronic devices for student classrooms.
“We wanted to align our fundraisers with our Healthy Los Nietos programs, and the mud run has proven very successful,” Vasquez said. “The students are able to safely fundraise for their school with their families and neighbors, help themselves through the purchase of additional school materials and most of all have fun with their friends.”
102616_LOSNIETOS_MUDRUN1: Aeolian students crawl their way through an obstacle course during the school’s Mud Run fundraiser on Oct. 21. The event raised over $12,000 to support school programs and increase technology in classrooms.
102616_LOSNIETOS_MUDRUN2: A Mud Run competitor slides his way through the course during Aeolian’s fundraising event on Oct. 21. The event raised over $12,000 to support school programs and increase technology in classrooms.