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South Dakota snowbank challenge raises money for schools

April 15, 2019

BOWDLE, S.D. (AP) — There are many issues that arise when schools decide to form a sports co-op.

One that’s easy to forget is the cost of uniforms.

With Bowdle, Eureka and Edmunds Central joining to create the North Central Thunder, money was needed to be raised to pay for uniforms. Tara Beitelspacher, the owner of the Bowdle newspaper, The Pride of the Prairie, had a clever way to help raise the money.

“It was about three schools coming together to fund the uniforms,” Bowdle superintendent Hector Serna said. “It was to get people to help donate.”

Beitelspacher posted her idea on the Facebook page of the Pride Publications. People were asked to climb a snowbank, have someone take their picture and then donate $100 to the school of their choice, the Aberdeen American News reported.

“Just like the polar bear challenge or other challenges you see on social media,” Serna said. “You go on top of the snowbank and challenge other community members to do it.”

The snowbank challenge was created. It’s worked, too.

It started March 19. Within one week, Bowdle had raised $10,000 to pay for roughly 100 uniforms. A little over two weeks later, Bowdle has raised even more money.

“Right now we’ve raised over $15,000 in the Bowdle district,” Serna said.

Serna isn’t sure how much Eureka or Edmunds Central have raised.

“Right now we’re trying to figure how many uniforms we have total for a three-school cooperative,” Serna said. “Each community is doing its own.”

Since Beitelspacher’s initial post on the Pride’s Facebook page, over 80 pictures of people taking the challenge are shown on the same page. Many people from across the country donated to all three schools.

According to the same Facebook page, Edmunds Central had raised enough money to pay for 38 uniforms as of March 27. There was no information about Eureka on the Facebook page.

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Information from: Aberdeen American News, http://www.aberdeennews.com