Nearly 1,000 elementary students from SD62 gathered for a day of track and field events at Royal Bay Secondary School on Friday.
Seventeen different schools sent students between grades three and five to participate in events like shot put, relay, 800-metre, 400 m and 100 m races.
Lorraine Van Dyk, a grade four/five teacher at Sangster Elementary and Jack Showers, a grade four/five teacher at Savory Elementary, have been organizing the track meet for the past 20 years.
“This is the best day of the year,” Showers said.
The two of them want to provide sports activities for kids and also organize leagues for handball, basketball, soccer and cross country.
Van Dyk said the track meet is great for younger students who want to participate in a sport and be part of a team. She said many of the students get very excited for the event in the days leading up to it.
“We had a student on the podium one time who said this is the best day of his life,” Van Dyk said. “We’ve had kids who have had stomach pains for a week because they’re so excited and anxious about it.”
Parents, family members and teammates cheered on runners as they made their way around the track to the finish line. Many of the students showed great sportsmanship as well, cheering on runners from other schools.
Josh Simicich’s 11-year-old son, Sam, was participating in a few events Friday. He said this is his son’s third year taking part in track and field.
“I like it a lot, I feel proud of him,” Simicich said. “They get to have a lot of fun too.”
Every student that participates in the track and field meet gets a ribbon. Those that win also get the chance to stand on the podium.
Van Dyk said track and field is a sport students can really get involved in and continue as they get older but most of all, it makes them part of a larger team.
“There’s nothing like wearing your school shirt,” Van Dyk said.