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The Hesston Record
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Hesston, KS 67062
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September 7, 2017 The Hesston RecordSeptember 7, 2017 The Hesston Record

HES In Living Color

Posted 5/4/2017

Record Staff

Hesston Elementary School students were covered in color on Thursday afternoon with the first-ever S.W.A.G. Color Run.

Physical education teacher Brandy Coker, in cooperation with Hesston Elementary School Nurse Tammi Krehbiel, coordinated the run as a capstone for the S.W.A.G. Program - where community members were invited to walk laps with Hesston Elementary School students during recess.

“Nurse Tammi and I wanted to take SWAG up a notch this year, so we made a finale,” she said.

Krehbiel said all 296 students were able to take part in the Color Run, regardless if they took part in the SWAG program throughout the spring.

“I would say we had about 95 percent participation in SWAG this year in some form or another,” said Coker. 

Coker added, cumulatively, kids have racked up hundreds of miles in the last six weeks as part of the program.

“This Friday, I will have a kiddo that will get close to 120 miles and three or four that have close to 110; there are several pushing 100 and I gave away probably 30 T-shirts for kids that reached 50 miles,” she said.

The students proved they had developed their endurance over the course of the one-and-a-half mile King Park loop course.

“Every kid finished. That was the coolest part. We didn’t have to pick up one kid. That was just really awesome,” said Coker. 

Coker said she chose King Park loop as a course for logistical reasons.

“It was the easiest course and it has sidewalks the kids could follow,” she said.

Mayor Dave Kauffman was this year’s rabbit, leading children around King Park for the first lap and over 50 volunteers lined King Park, cheering on students and showering them with powdered color. 

As children finished their lap around the park, Coker said they lined up to encourage other runners.

“People were cheering kids on. Even if they were really struggling, those kids gave a big smile and it gave them the final push. That was really cool to see peers really wanting to see others do their best and finish,” she said.

Coker said the six weeks of SWAG, and the final run, was a way to encourage children to get out and get active.

“We wanted to teach kids that setting goals is a good thing. Exercise, or some other life event or academics, something like this teaches kids to finish hard, set goals, stay focused and reach for what they want,” she said.