Conscious party: Slide the Fletch, take two

THE WETTER THE BETTER: Organizer Robin Payne hopes to raise $4,000 to $5,000 at Hall Fletcher Elementary's second Slide the Fletch event, which features outdoor water attractions, live music and food. Photo by Jason Garris

WHAT: A Slip’N Slide party with outdoor activities benefiting Hall Fletcher Elementary

WHERE: Hall Fletcher Elementary field

WHEN: Saturday, Aug. 20, from 11 a.m., to 3 p.m. (in-person registration begins at 10:30 a.m.)

WHY: The promise of 50- and 100-foot water slides lured several hundred people to last year’s Slide the Fletch event, an outdoor benefit that raised about $3,500 for Hall Fletcher Elementary. For the second iteration, organizer and PTO member Robin Payne has loftier plans — literally.

“We’ve got an even bigger, inflatable double water slide,” she says, estimating a height of 20 feet. “It excites the kid in all of us.”

Other attractions at the field day include a human bowling set-up, additional water slides, a covered toddler area and an up-and-coming sport called baby pool kickball. That station is shaped like a regular baseball diamond, Payne explains, but “you run on a Slip’N Slide, and you have to slide into a baby pool instead of the base.”

“We don’t want to turn anybody away,” she continues, so there’s a suggested donation for the wristband that sliders must wear: $5 for individuals younger than 18 and $8 for adults. Donations beyond that are welcome, but spectators and toddlers can attend for free, too. For them, the gathering offers live music by The Square Circles, refreshments from The Hop and Melt Your Heart food truck, and top-notch people watching.

Earnings from last year’s Slide the Fletch supported progress on Hall Fletcher’s Outdoor Learning Center, a garden area and mini teacher grants to cover expenses like field trips. Payne expects to use this year’s funds on similar student enrichment projects, though the PTO and teachers will determine specifics.

Considering Hall Fletcher in relation to neighboring institutions, she adds: “We are significantly lower income here. We also have a smaller school. … That’s why it’s important that we open our fundraisers up past our school family and out into the community.”

Visit slidethefletch.com for more information and advanced slider registration.

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About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

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