If foul weather set the start of this year’s Buffalo Stampede back a couple of days, the more than 600 Bergen kids who ran their little hearts out on May 16 to benefit the Bergen Meadow Field Project finished way ahead of expectations.
“They raised more than $20,000,” says Lisa McLagan, vice president of fund-raising for the Bergen Parent Teacher Association. “It’s amazing. The most the Stampede’s ever raised is $9,000, and they doubled it.”
Rounding up school, grade and classroom sponsors prior to the run, folks at the PTA privately dared hope for maybe $12,000 — the bare minimum needed to purchase bleachers for the 2.5-acre field, which is scheduled for an extreme makeover this summer.
“One of the things we talked about is that all the money would go for education, and field seating serves that purpose,” McLagan says. “They can hold outside labs on them, or use the fields as an amphitheater. Even when we were hoping for $12,000, we felt we’d need more than that. But this will cover the whole cost of seating. It takes a lot of pressure off of some other things.”
At the risk of fomenting an interschool rivalry, the wee tykes at Bergen Meadow Elementary roped about 60 percent of the purse, while their scholastic superiors down the way at Bergen Meadow Intermediate lassoed the remaining 40 percent. Still, while both student bodies are rich in youthful vigor, neither is exactly flush with folding money, so a grateful tip o’ the cap is due the dozens of Bergen parents who pledged $100 classroom sponsorships, $150 grade sponsorships and $250 school sponsorships, not to mention the assorted neighbors, friends and kin who also helped.
“That’s one of the things that’s so cool about this community,” says McLagan. “When you present them with a need, they always rise to the occasion.”
To learn more about the Bergen Meadow Field Project, visit www.bergenfields.info.