What started as a special event to motivate a PE teacher’s 4th and 5th graders to stay active and healthy seven years ago evolved into an all-schools event, comprising all 4th and 5th grade students in the Monrovia District and volunteers.
“For many students, this is a highlight of their time in elementary school. It is truly a community event,” said Dana Elliott, the teacher who started MEO Games seven years ago.
Teams of 25 athletes from each elementary school in the Monrovia Unified School District will meet at Monrovia High on March 29 to compete in track and field events fashioned after the Olympics. Besides cheering for their classmates in the Olympic-style track and field events, the 4th and 5th graders also partake in the Health and Nutrition Olympics, sponsored by Champions for Change. This year, 400 students will be hoola-hooping while another 400 play a game of mega-beach volleyball as a way to have fun while staying fit and active.
Year after year, the Monrovia Schools Foundation (MSF) and all of the MUSD elementary schools’ PTAs have fully funded the MEO Games—no district money has been spent on the event. Unfortunately, with all the cuts in education, MEO Games is trying to fill a budget gap of $500.00.
“Each year, the costs do go up. Three of the schools can’t walk to Monrovia High and every year, the busing cost goes up,” Elliott explained.
MEO Games is reaching out to the Monrovia community for individuals or businesses who might be willing to sponsor the event. Any type of contribution will help. Sponsorships would help defray the cost of the event and also provide t-shirts for the athletes who participate in MEO.
“The t-shirts are part of a memory the kids have for the day—it’s something they can take home,” Elliott said.
“MEO Games will motivate them to keep going to school and to stay healthy and active,” Elliott continued.
Donations may be sent for the MEO Games in care of and a tax-deductible receipt will be given. Sponsors are invited to attend to the MEO Games and see firsthand what a unique and powerful time this is in the lives of Monrovia’s 4th and 5th grade students. The event will be held at Monrovia High School on Thursday, March 29. The Opening Ceremonies begin at 9:00 am and the event concludes at 1:00 pm.