Training for the Fox Cities Marathon already started for kids

It's a long way to go still but kids are all in
Published: May. 17, 2023 at 5:24 PM CDT
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FREEDOM, Wis. (WBAY) - Alyssa Garvey is in the second grade at Freedom Elementary School and she loves to run. In fact, she’s already getting her friends involved through the Fox Cities Marathon School Challenge with the Kids Fun Run coming up in September.

”I really like the Fun Run because it’s fun running with my friends and you get some money,” Alyssa Garvey said.

Unfortunately, the event isn’t paying everyone to run, but the School Challenge gives students an opportunity to raise money for their school.

There are three divisions: Small, medium and large, and the top three schools in each division with the most student participants can win up to $750.

Freedom Elementary School has a wall of trophies, taking home the top spot every year since 2006. Well, except the one year they came in second place.

”What’s great about Freedom Elementary is they know what they’re doing,” said Julie Johnson, Fox Cities Marathon race director.

The school uses their winnings to improve their physical education department.

”It’s really nice because I can buy a lot of replacement things with my budget money and then with the money that I’ve won from the Fox Cities Kids Fun Run, I’ve been able to get those extra things,” said Kelly Thews, Freedom Elementary School physical education teacher, For Thews, picking out the new equipment is special.

“One of two ways, I either just open the catalog and go crazy and just find things that I really think the kids would enjoy or I find a hole in our curriculum with something that’s out there that’s new,” Thews said. As a bonus, the Kids Fun Run gets the students excited about exercise.

“When I presented Freedom Elementary with their check last November, they were all excited in a school assembly and to come back and see them using the equipment and enjoying it and having fun and talking about ‘we’re coming back this year and we’re going to win again!’” Johnson said. “All schools should do this, all schools should sign up. Again, it’s easy and it’s fun,” she added.

And for future track star Garvey, she gets a chance to experiment with her competitive edge during the race.”I was thinking like ‘can we pass people?’ or ‘should I stay close to my brother or should I just let my brother go?” Garvey mused.