More Than Words

An open letter “Thank You” for Mini-THON
Seniors gather together after Mini-THON and sing to Revival by Zach Bryan.
Seniors gather together after Mini-THON and sing to “Revival” by Zach Bryan.

Dear Hempfield Area,

Last year, I took a leap of faith and decided to apply for the 2023 Mini-THON executive team. When this adventure began, I was both excited yet scared. Never did I think it would lead me here.

People tend to just throw words around. Pride. Togetherness.  Sacrifice. Selflessness. They are easily printed on a poster, but seeing live means so much more. I saw this, I felt this, and I experienced this. 

I witnessed selflessness. This journey has not been easy, and I knew my position meant dedicating time to make this event a success. Canning on the side of the street from 9 A.M.- 3 P.M., standing in some of the worst weather imaginable, spending my Saturday’s filling and addressing hundreds of letters to alumni, counting endless amounts of coins, and making dozens of phone calls was not the easiest task. Time and time again, my team worked together, and completed everything that needed to be done, even if it meant long nights and bickering that resulted in success.

I gained trust. As I glanced at the calendar and realized that our main event was nearing closer and closer, my naturally anxious self started to panic. Millions of questions ran through my head. Planning a twelve hour event for students and the community was a daunting task, but I knew with my team, we could make it happen. You ultimately will question yourself. What resolved these worries was the realization that I wasn’t alone. I simply needed to rely on the people around me.

I felt unity. As April 5th rolled around the corner, I saw the Hempfield community come together. In our last week alone, we raised over $15,000 in online donations, with over 30 community sponsors. I started to realize that all of the stress I was experiencing was unnecessary. The Spartan pride and Hempfield community had my team’s back. The 217 high school students who participated showed their utmost support for the cause. 

I experienced pride. At 9:30 P.M. on Friday, April 5th, the night of the event, I was standing on the stage looking at the clock. There were 15 minutes until our final total reveal. I watched a bunch of high school students laughing and dancing. I glanced at the wall of community sponsors who helped donate. I admired my teachers coming together to count our final total. At 9:45, it was announced we raised a total of $61,507.04 all for pediatric cancer research, and all for the kids.

Total Reveal (Mrs. Natalie Fetterman)

This total not only represents dollars or cents; it represents 61,507 seconds standing on a street corner. Calling someone on the phone. Sitting at a registration table. Putting tape on the back of a poster. But most importantly, spending this time with the people who want to make a difference in someone else’s life. 

At the end of the day, you realize that the words people just “throw around” aren’t just words; there are humans behind those words. You need the people you call your friends, classmates, and teachers to make them come alive. 

Our Admin Team: Joely McMullen, Malea Nadeo, Ashley Hosni, Teacher Advisor, Mrs. Ashley Testa, Riley Dunn, Maggie Howard, and Peyton Heisler (Alyssa Manderach)

Thank you Hempfield Area, for your generosity and dedication to the fight against pediatric cancer.

Thank you Hempfield Area for showing me what a real community looks like.  

Thank you, Ashley, Riley, Peyton, Maggie and Joely for being my rock.

Thank you Hempfield Area, for making me proud to be a Spartan.



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