Last month’s Christmas Tree Run up at Silver Crest Elementary was a chance for students from many of our district schools to come together and share a love for running, while also celebrating the legacy of a former Silver Crest Principal.
“The Run was the dream child of [former Silver Crest Principal] Mark Recker, who was an avid runner,” says Silver Crest Principal Mark Hannan. “It began with him simply wanting to get students to share his love of running. Although the original purpose remains, the run has turned into more of a tribute to Mark’s legacy at Silver Crest.
This year’s run marked ten years of the activity, and included almost 600 students from Silver Crest, Victor Point, Scotts Mills, Central Howell, Pratum, and Evergreen Elementary Schools. Runners from Silverton High School’s Cross Country team came out with Coach Erik Cross to support and run alongside the elementary students.
“I always have volunteers,” says Coach Cross. “It’s more a matter of who do I bring. And what’s amazing is I’ve never had to tell my kids not to cross the finish line – they recognize it’s all about the elementary students and they stop and cheer them on at the last leg.”
“Students love the opportunity to compete,” Mr. Hannan adds. “The run was never meant to be a competition per se, but anytime you get kids together….especially from other schools, a competition usually breaks out. Each grade at Silver Crest is provided a running goal to prepare for the run. Once the student meets the goal, they receive a free t-shirt provided by donors and our Booster Club. The staff have been very supportive of this event over the years. They utilize PE time for our students to meet their running goals, so they can earn their Christmas Tree Run t-shirt.”
As with any event of this magnitude, the benefits range beyond the obvious. For Silver Crest students, honoring Mark Recker’s legacy while getting fit and sharing friendly rivalry with students from around the district is all part of building a shared history together.
“I think this event is another example of what makes our district unique,” says Mr. Hannan. “Traditions are very important in the development of our students, and this is one that the Silver Crest community is proud to showcase.”