Stuck on Charity – Harvest Ridge students raise money for Special Olympics

Posted on 02/22/2016
It happens – we get stuck from time to time. We can be stuck in traffic, stuck at home in a snowstorm, or stuck in a line at the cafeteria. But if you make a promise to some students at Harvest Ridge Elementary, you might just get stuck to the wall. The school’s principal, Dr. Natalie DeWeese, challenged her students that if they could reach a goal of $500 in donations to Special Olympics, she would allow them to duct tape her to the wall of the school gym. The Harvest Ridge community rallied as a result, raising more than $2,000.


The school’s Student Council hosted a Spirit Week to raise funds for the Special Olympics. Dr. DeWeese was inspired by these students, and thought she’d make their goals more interesting by offering to allow them to tape her to the wall if they reached the $500 goal. Thanks to the generosity of the Harvest Ridge community, the students met that goal just a couple days later. The students were then given another goal – for every $500 raised, they could tape another staff member to the wall. They ended up raising $2,000 by paying to participate in Spirit days, and by purchasing raffle tickets for a chance physically tape a staff member to a wall in the gym.

Not everyone was initially sold on the idea. One staff member playfully said she’d “rather kiss a pig” than get duct taped to a wall. Well, someone found a pig… 

Being a great sport, Joni Beck, assistant principal at Harvest Ridge stood by her word and…kissed a pot-bellied pig in honor of the kids’ donations. That just proves the lengths the Harvest Ridge community will go to improve the lives of those around them.

 Beck Kiss

At the conclusion of the assembly, Dr. DeWeese shared four very important lessons with the students. First, you can do anything you set your mind to, and
more when you work as a team. Secondly, if you make a promise to someone, you have to follow through on that promise. Thirdly, be careful what you say and ask for with your words – because if you say you would rather kiss a pig than be duct taped to a wall, it might just happen. Finally, if you are going to be duct taped to the wall, make sure you go to the bathroom first!

“We are so proud of our students for their teamwork and contribution!” said Dr. Deweese. “Many special thanks to those that got everything organized. It really makes me proud to be a Hawk!”


The best part, the money raised goes to the Special Olympics. Joe Shaw, assistant principal at John Weldon Elementary, is the head of the Francis Howell School District (FHSD) chapter of the Special Olympics. Dr. DeWeese’s assistant, Jane Hepler, got the privilege of telling Shaw the news. “I just told him the amount that we raised ($2,000), and he was speechless. He said that that amount alone will pay for this year’s Special Olympics outright.”

It was just another amazing component to the event, but it also showed how Harvest Ridge students want to be more than just a component of their community. They want to be leaders, and they want to make their community better. They want to be the bond that holds the community together.

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2018 West Corporation. All rights reserved.