Field day fun for Aspen students

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Aspen Elementary held it’s first “Field Day” a few weeks ago, much to the delight of students and teachers.
The brainchild of Colin Hemez, a student at Los Alamos High School and Andy Garcia, a coach at Aspen Elementary School, the students participated in many activities, including: running races, “Zumba” excercises, ball games and just some good old running around. A couple of trucks from the Los Alamos Fire Department were there too, and firefighters were on hand to demonstrate some of the more interesting tools on board as well as give tours of the trucks’ interiors.
“It was really fun. It felt like a celebration,” Kathryn Vandenkieboom, principal of Aspen Elementary said.
She said not only did the kids get some exercise, but they learned teamwork as well.
“Colin was looking to do a service project and he at first thought about organizing a race,” Garcia said. But after we met it turned into a field day for the entire school.”
According to Garcia, it was the first time the school had a field day. It’s an event they hope to make into a tradition, he added.
“Next year, the school will be in the middle of construction but the year after that we definitely plan to continue it.”
Hemez said organizing the event seemed like the natural thing to do.
“I’ve been running cross country running since middle school, so organizing an event like this was something I thought would be fun for the entire community,” he said.
Hemez said the day featured eight races, a standing long jump event, flag tag, relay races, Zumba, street hockey. There were 29 stations in total, he said. Helping Hemez out were his fellow cross-country runners with the races.
Hemez said he would also like to thank the Los Alamos Co-op for providing snacks for the kids, the Aspen Parent-Teacher Organization for providing the water and the Los Alamos Fire Department for stopping by and giving tours and talks to the students.
Hemez said he’s currently organizing things so the Aspen Field Day will continue long after he’s graduated.
“There are many clubs at the high school that do service projects, so I will be trying to get some of those groups involved so this will continue into the future,” he said, adding that he hoped the event left a positive impression with the students.
“Above all, I hope they enjoyed it,” he said. “I hoped they had fun and that they figured out new ways to play and new things to do that will help them later on, perhaps they will be motivated to join the cross country team.”