DANVILLE — Middle school students are looking forward to the Danville Middle School’s open house this Thursday at 6 p.m.
“It will be good to open it up to the public,” said Charles Smargiassi, school principal.
While the public was able to tour the renovated building before it was open for the first day of school on Aug. 26, this week’s event will feature special activities such as raffles, bake sale and the first public use of the auditorium in two years.
“It will be nice to use the auditorium again for its intended purpose,” Smargiassi said.
Performing at the open house will be the high school chorus, who will sing the Star-Spangled Banner, and the high school woodwind quintet, who will be performing a variety of pieces.
During school hours, middle school choral students have been using the renovated stage to begin practice for their Christmas concert, Smargiassi said.
The open house will also be used to spotlight the “Ryan’s Run” charity, which raises money for kids and adults with disabilities. If the district raises more money than others within the region, they will be features in a special broadcast by WNEP’s Ryan Leckey.
Proceeds collected during the night will benefit Danville’s Allied Services.
Among the fundraiser’s biggest proponents were the middle school students themselves.
“It’s a great program with the school,” said 12-year old Olivia Crumb. She and classmate Haley Hendricks, age 12, are looking forward to collecting fundraiser money from activities that include selling raffle tickets and baked goods.
“I like donating money to help kids with special needs,” said Aden Delaney, age 12.
“I think the Ryan’s Run program is a worthy cause because it’s helping kids with special needs,” said Kaiden Kurzawa, age 12.
For raffle prizes, more than 30 gift baskets have been assembled from donations by local merchants. Stores that donated items to the raffle include, but are not limited to, Cole’s Hardware, Scott’s Floral, Chef Willies Creamery, Steve Shannon Tire and Auto Center, Whadda Pizza, The English Garden, LT Evans and FNB Bank.
Ticket prices for the raffle are $1 for one ticket, $5 for seven tickets, $10 for 15 tickets and $20 for 40 tickets.
A social and charity dodge ball tournament for the middle school students will also take place during Sept. 26.
The Danville Middle School was closed in Sept. 2011, due to extensive flood damage from Tropical Storm Lee. Renovations and repairs took place over the next two years, while the school’s approximately 550 students were taught in spare classrooms at other district schools.
The district invested approximately $11.5 million restoring the school, about $10 million of which was paid for by the Federal and Pennsylvania management agencies.
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