Six third-graders in the Central York School District are getting a taste of giving back by planning a fundraiser to benefit a charity for children with cancer.
Brett Schoonover, one of the third-graders attending Roundtown Elementary School, said the group came up with the idea to raise money during a flag football game when Carter Bowman, a freshman at Central York High School, visited their school. The game will be held Saturday.
Carter discovered he had a brain tumor in 2011 and went for treatment to the University of Pennsylvania's Proton Radiation Therapy Center in Philadelphia. After his initial treatment, Carter set up the Carter N. Bowman Foundation to benefit children who are at the center for prolonged periods of time but don't have the means to enjoy activities between treatments.
The money raised allows children and their families to visit the Philadelphia Zoo, attend a professional sporting event and go to museums or art galleries, according to the foundation's website.
Planning: Brett said after Carter's visit, their teacher, Amy Musone, challenged her students to make their community a better place.
So the boys started brainstorming and decided on the flag football fundraiser.
They've spent the past two months planning the event. The six 9-year-olds presented their idea to several district staff members, including Marty Trimmer, the athletic director, to secure the high school football stadium for the game and to use the district's flag football equipment.
The boys convinced another 15 students from Roundtown to play in the game. Brett, Garrison Pate and Dayton Bagwell will be the captains for one team; Conner Ream, Nathaniel Morris and Joshua Polanchek will head up the other one.
Donations: The six students also went to local businesses to ask for donations to a raffle they will have at the game. Garrison secured gift cards from Round the Clock Diner, Dayton got some from McDonald's and Royer's Flowers and Gifts, and the other boys each secured monetary donations or other gifts to be raffled off at the event.
Nathaniel said their goal is to raise $200 through the event. So far, the boys have already raised $140 from donations.
The boys are still working out some details for this weekend, such as how to split up the teams and whether they'll play four quarters or two halves. But they have support for some of the finer details: Nathaniel said his dad will be helping with security, Conner said his mom is helping with ticket sales, and Brett said his dad is doing the announcing.
Garrison said they're all planning to play their hardest next weekend. But that's not the focus.
"It's mostly just to have fun," he said.
Gates will open at 2:15 p.m. Saturday, with the game beginning at 3 p.m. Tickets are $3 at the gate for people over 12 years old, and $1 for children ages 4-12.
Children under 4 are admitted free. Raffle tickets will also be available that day for $1.
— Reach Nikelle Snader at firstname.lastname@example.org.