On a sunny but chilly day on Oct. 9, 1,100 students raised $39,000 in Cider Mill School’s fourth annual walkathon.

The walkathon is Cider Mill’s only fund-raiser for the school’s Parent Teacher Association (PTA), and the money raised surpassed the goal set by Nicola Davies, PTA fund-raising chair, who ran the event.

The students streamed onto the high school track as music played, dancing to songs like “Get Lucky,” “Best Song Ever,” and “Walking on Sunshine.” Walking on Sunshine was the theme of the event, exemplified by the free T-shirt given to students who turned in pledges before Sept. 20.

Cider Mill held a contest last spring to determine a design for the T-shirt. Third-grader  Jenna Kirincich was the winner with her design of children holding hands around the sun. Music master Hillary Morrissy also made sure to play the new hit song “The Fox” by Ylvis.

In the weeks leading up to the walkathon, students gathered pledges from friends and family. According to Ms. Davies, 90% of students participated, submitting pledge forms by Oct. 4. No amount was too small, as the main goal for the PTA was to get every student involved. The funds will be used for the PTA Gifts and Grants program. Cider Mill teachers apply to the Gifts and Grants program for support for specific projects. Last year, funds went to enhance programs like Visiting Author Days and science curricula, and to improve learning tools with technology.

Ms. Davies attributed the success of the event to “a true community of effort, from the administration, to the art teachers, the Student Activity Group, to the parents. I hope the children take away happy memories and realize the power that they have to do good and have fun at the same time.”

PTA President Lisa Smith said the walkathon is “a fun activity that really brings the whole school community, kids and administration together. And of course, the kids love to see their teachers and principals dancing along the track with them.”