Daily Star photo/KATIE ROHMAN Ballard Elementary kindergarteners and pre-1 students walk and run around the school’s track Friday at Relay for Life. The school beat its $1,200 goal with at least $3,000. The money will go to the Niles-Buchanan Relay for Life in July.

Archived Story

Ballard hauls in $3K for Relay

Published 8:12am Saturday, April 28, 2012

The staff at Ballard Elementary School has discovered a great way to motivate students to raise funds.

Promise someone will kiss a cow.

“It works pretty well,” said second-grade teacher Lynne Hinsey, who helped organize a school-wide Relay for Life event to benefit cancer research.

The Relay for Life event took place Friday at Ballard Elementary. Students from each grade level took turns walking around the track in 30-minute shifts while students participating in Girls on the Run distributed water for a community service project.

The school had been raising money in the months leading up to Friday’s event, and organizers estimate collecting at least $3,000.

That means six Niles Community Schools employees will be puckering up for a cow on Tuesday.

Students were told Ballard Assistant Principal Joe Racht would have to kiss a cow if $750 was raised.

At $1,000, Principal David Eichenberg also had to pucker up.

Teacher Derek Brakefield was added at $1,200, Howard teacher Zech Hoyt at $1,400, Supt. Richard Weigel at $1,500 and teacher Misty Krueger at $2,000.

The big kiss will take place at 2:30 p.m. in the middle of Ballard’s track.

It isn’t the first time Ballard used such a method to get students involved in a good cause.

Racht had to kiss a pig in November after students collected more than 2,500 non-perishable food items for the Niles Salvation Army.

This is Ballard’s second year holding a Relay for Life event. The tradition actually began years ago at Eastside after a student there was diagnosed with cancer. When Eastside closed in 2010, the tradition was renewed at Ballard.

“It’s a great way to get kids involved in the community and a way for them to know they are helping others,” Hinsey said.

The money raised will be added to the Niles-Buchanan Relay for Life event July 21-22 at Niles High School.

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