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2nd Annual GROW Strong 5K Ran

Dobson GROW Strong Team 18 The second Annual Surry County Schools GROW Strong 5K roared through Fisher River Park on Monday, November 26, 2018.  All eleven elementary schools participated in the event with more than 350 students competing.  The day began with a one-mile run for Kindergarten, first and second-grade runners.  The 5K race for third, fourth and fifth-grade runners began at 10:00 in the morning.  By 11:00 am, all 350+ student runners had completed the race with dozens of family members and Surry County School system staff cheering on each team.

GROW is an acronym for Go Run Our World.  The initiative encourages enthusiasm for health and wellness, and a love of running. Each team’s coach trains students to run a 5K and teaches perseverance, responsibility, race etiquette, self-motivation, self-pride, and teamwork.  Training takes place over ten weeks leading up to the big event.

Sponsors of each running team include: 

  • Cedar Ridge Elementary - Tim Hamlin Farm Bureau
  • Copeland Elementary - Carolina Laser Designs and Copeland Ruritan Club
  • Dobson Elementary - Surry Insurance
  • Flat Rock Elementary - Acme Stone and Sarah Stevens for House
  • Franklin Elementary - Chick-fil-A
  • Mountain Park Elementary - Kevin Powell's Foothill Ford
  • Rockford Elementary - Surry Central High School Cross Country Family
  • Shoals Elementary - Pilot Mechanical
  • Westfield Elementary - 13 Bones, Art of Massage, Tweet & Co Hair Studio, and Utility Trailer Manufacturing Company
  • White Plains - Choice Metal Buildings

RES GROW Strong Team 18 The 2nd Annual GROW Strong 5K was organized by Mrs. Deanne Fitzgerald, Teacher and GROW Strong Coach at Rockford Elementary, Dr. DeAnne Danley, Director of Elementary Education and AIG, and Mrs. Ashley Mills, Surry County Schools Educational Foundation Liaison. Surry County Parks & Recreation hosted the event and worked with the organizers to ensure safety for all participants.

Superintendent of Surry County Schools and father of one of the runners, Dr. Travis L. Reeves, commented, “I am proud our school system can offer a program that promotes goal setting and perseverance.  This event has become one of my favorite events of the school year as we celebrate physical fitness, drive, and determination to reach a goal.  I am encouraged to see our students come together to have fun, make new friends, and encourage one another to meet their goals.  The runners have trained hard and it is great to see their hard work pay off.  I also appreciate the hard work and effort of our Grow Strong coaches, who make physical fitness a priority every day.  We all know children need to be healthy to learn and what we observed today is healthy children in action.” 

Dr. Reeves and Dr. Danley presented the following awards to third, fourth, and fifth-grade students:

3rd Grade Girls                     School                         Time

  1. Madison Ayers            Rockford                     23:45.65
  2. Kenidi Hall                 Rockford                     25:58.06
  3. Jaycee Dalton            Rockford                     28:30.12

4th Grade Girls                     School                         Time

  1. Danii Daughenbaugh White Plains                24:48.98
  2. Catherine Chaire       Cedar Ridge                25:42.55
  3. Sophia Easter           Franklin                      25:49.18

5th Grade Girls                     School                         Time

  1. Maggy Sechrist          Pilot Mountain            23:57.37
  2. Cameron Cruise         Dobson                     25:10.52
  3. Anabel Ratterman      Franklin                     26:03.93

3rd Grade Boys                     School                         Time

  1. Caleb Cruise              Dobson                        21:47.68
  2. Cole Knox                 Shoals                          22:41.64
  3. Cooper Woodring       Dobson                        24:06.37

4th Grade Boys                     School                         Time

  1. Alex Spainhour          F lat Rock                    21:25.69
  2. Cayden Newman       White Plains                22:35.62
  3. Dru Gaddy                Dobson                      23:36.24


5th Grade Boys                     School                         Time

  1. Brayden Woodring      Dobson                     20:43.20
  2. Carter Motsinger        Pilot Mountain            20:46.22
  3. Jax Whitaker             Rockford                    21:16.88

Once again, Dobson Elementary accepted the award for overall fastest boys’ team, and Rockford Elementary excitedly accepted the award for fastest girls’ team again this year.

The final presentation was the GROW Strong All Heart awards for male and female. Coaches could nominate students for this award based on attitude, participation, courage, and team spirit.

Reagan Snow, from Mountain Park Elementary, and Jax Whitaker from Rockford Elementary, won those awards.  Congratulations to all students and coaches!