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Stoner Creek principals camp out on roof to fulfill promise

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Stoner Creek Principal Christine Miller (right) in her Captain America jammies sits along side Assistant Principal Jennifer Yokom on the roof the school Friday night. They promised their students they would camp on top of the school if they reached a $45,000 fundraiser goal.   Photo courtesy of Christine Miller
Stoner Creek students dedicate the first lap of the Bash-N-Dash run to the military and emergency service workers in honor of Sept. 11, the day of the fundraiser run.   Photo courtesy of Christine Miller
Stoner Creek Principal Christine Miller (right) in her Captain America jammies sits along side Assistant Principal Jennifer Yokom on the roof the school Friday night. They promised their students they would camp on top of the school if they reached a $45,000 fundraiser goal.   Photo courtesy of Christine Miller

It was a bit chilly high in the sky last Friday for two local principals.

Stoner Creek Elementary Principal Christine Miller and Assistant Principal Jennifer Yokom are usually entrenched within the walls of the school they run, however, Friday they were in an unlikely place.

Up on the roof.

And yes, the temps dipped a bit lower than expected, but these two troopers were well prepared. Of course there were the prerequisite Cheese-Its, Doritos and hot coffee in a giant thermos within arms reach. Along with cozy PJ's and blankets.

"That's what layers are for," Miller laughed. "I'd say it was a memorable experience."

Their overnight camping trip in the sky was a payback to their students. They both promised they would sleep on the roof if the student body surpassed a fund-raising goal. And, they did, big time.

The annual fundraiser is called "Bash-N-Dash," where students get monetary donations from family and friends for school-wide needs.

"It started the first of the year," Miller explained. "And culminated Sept. 11."

The goal was $45,000. They raised $47,000, thus, the cold campout on the roof.

"Not only did parents and families donate, but many local businesses did also," Miller said. "We have a lot of strong supporters of Stoner Creek. We are very fortunate for the generosity shown."

Last year the two got their faced "slimed" when that goal was reached. It's all for the betterment of the school, said this veteran educator.

Bash-N-Dash day took place specifically on Sept. 11, the anniversary of the terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. The main event of the day was nearly 100 percent of the school's whooping 760 students (780 now) running laps for pledges.

"Because of the obvious significance of the date, the first lap was dedicated to veterans, military personnel and all emergency workers who serve or served our country," Miller said. "We wanted to thank them for their service."

To fulfill their promise, Miller and Yokom chose Oct. 30 to sleep on the roof. That day was their Fall Carnival and at the end of it the students said "good night" to the adventurous pair.

"We had glow sticks and there was a dance party with a DJ," Miller said.

The kids got a kick out of the principals' adventure and there was a lot of FaceTime between the students and principals throughout the early evening.

"We showed them the tents and the insides and what we were doing," Miller said.

And no, they didn't get much sleep. They asked the students to rise and shine at 6 a.m. to greet them Saturday morning.

"Not a soul was there," Miller laughed. "I really don't blame them!"

Needless to say, Saturday was a "lazy day," they said.

The money raised will go a long way. It's slated for a computer lab update, new Chromebooks, the PTO and individual classroom needs.

"Every year I am so overwhelmed by everyone's generosity," Miller said. "The students, the parents and the community. This is not a job, this is an adventure."

Writer Laurie Everett may be contacted at laurieeverett1@gmail.com.

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