Bring it on

Rick Gunn/Nevada Appeal Michaela Golden, 7, bounces on a ball during Seeliger Field Day at Seeliger Elementary on Thursday morning.

Rick Gunn/Nevada Appeal Michaela Golden, 7, bounces on a ball during Seeliger Field Day at Seeliger Elementary on Thursday morning.

The Mighty Mighty Pirates had just defeated their competitors in a bouncy relay of Hippity-Hop, but with the sun coming out for a few minutes, they experienced a new challenge - staying dry.

It's not clear who picked up the first water bottle, squirt gun or bucket, but instinct kicked in, and within a few minutes co-teachers Debbie Hartley and Tom Fruth were running for their dry lives from their first graders in the field at Seeliger Elementary School.

Somehow first-grader MacKenzie Gilliam, 7, ended up getting the water in her white bucket dumped on her.

"I feel crazy," she said stopping for a pause.

In all honesty, it was a day for craziness, that second-to-the-last-day of school at Seeliger Elementary School, known as Field Day.

"Tomorrow is our last day," MacKenzie said, "and we're going to give gifts to our teachers and say goodbye."

The schoolwide event included 21 stations, like Frisbee golf, the waiter's race and the noodle toss, the frog bounce, sack races and face painting.

"I was a little stressed about having it in the gym or outside about 6:15 this morning," said physical education teacher Michele Van Voorst, responsible for the event. She said only a few drops of rain fell during the day.

Nonetheless, the Mighty Mighty Pirates managed to find water.

"I'm pretty wet," said Jesus Garcia, 7, who pulled up from running and pointed out his dampened gray shirt. Carlos Garcia, 7, his best friend, stopped next to him, his blue T-shirt and matching shorts moist from the water play.

And when their teachers moved them on to Station 19, "The Toes Challenge," it was an opportunity for more.

The first-graders jumped into two kid-sized pools of water, somewhat murky at that point, and started removing marbles with their feet.

"Look, I got one," said Angela Shao, 6, dropping a marble from her foot onto the ground.

She went back for more, but because the pools were crowded with scrambling classmates she lifted marbles from the outside with her foot.

"The Field Day celebration is fun and games for everybody," said Fruth, standing nearby, and encouraging his students to stand in the kid pools five at a time to remove marbles.

The day began at 8:40 a.m. when each class walked out with a team flag and yelled a class cheer for school district administration, including Carson City School District Superintendent Mary Pierczynski.

"It's a minimum day and a 12:30 release," Fruth said. "We'll go back to the class and take a nap or read a story and calm down."

But as the end of the day approached, Hartley's students pushed her on a swing and Fruth's students played basketball and football around the side of the school.

"Oh yeah, we (the teachers) love (Field Day)," he said. "It's the best time ever. It's just a time when everybody gets together and has a blast at the end the school year."

- Contact reporter Maggie O'Neill at or 881-1219.


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