Students set to spin their way to sport success

April 16, 2014   ·   0 Comments

By Brock Weir

Students at Dr. G.W. Williams Secondary School will be spinning their way to their school’s athletic success this week – and giving kids in the community a Jumpstart to boot.

Over 16 student teams, each in groups of five or six, will be taking over the Williams gym on 30 stationary bikes to raise money for their school’s athletic program, as well as the Canadian Tire Jumpstart Program.

The Spin-A-Thon is the brainchild of Stephanie Blom, Claire Murphy, and Alexandra Scott, all in Grade 12, who wanted to find a way to incorporate “healthy, active living” while raising money at the same time.

“There are two benefits to one event,” says Stephanie.

The group found inspiration from a similar event done at the school a few years ago. That drive, however, simply had individual students riding on bikes as long as they could. But, according to Alexandra, they wanted to come up with something a bit more special to generate “more enthusiasm and more of a team environment.”

“We have already started coming up with different active, yet fun, and somewhat simple competitive games,” says Alexandra. “We have a balance idea of how long you can balance on one leg while holding a basketball. We also have a game of 21 in basketball, as well as a challenge in how may free throws you can in one minute.”

As details finalize, they won’t rule out a hula hoop challenge either!

With sixteen teams signed up by the end of last week, organizers have already surpassed the expectations of other students, but they say they had a hunch all along the buy-in from the students would strike the right note.

“I am definitely looking forward to just the enthusiasm,” says Claire. “We had a buy-in before March Break for the boys volleyball team and there were so many students there cheering on the teachers vs. kids game. We’re hoping to get that enthusiasm and spirit.”

Adds Stephanie: “It costs $25 to enter, but it is a pledge. You don’t have to pay it yourself and can get sponsorship from the community. You are encouraged to bring more, but that is the minimum to get on a bike. If we had 30 bikes, that would be amazing, but with all the teams we have, we have raised over $2,000 for the school. We think it is awesome it is going back to the students.”

As they plan on heading off to university this fall – Alexandra hopes to go to the University of Ottawa for communications or public relations, Claire to Dalhousie or McGill, leaning towards business commerce, and Stephanie to the University of Western Ontario with a penchant for mechanical engineering – they hope students taking part this year will pick up the torch and make this Thursday’s Spin-A-Thon a legacy which will live on yearly.



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