A literal burst of color will be making its way into Dripping Springs on Oct. 31 to bring a bright and colorful feeling into the mundane pandemic life.
What was originally a Color Run intended for Dripping Springs High School expanded to involve the community. This is the first time that Project Graduation puts on a color run event and the idea came to Brea Black, chairperson of Project Graduation, for a good reason.
“I have never attended a color run,” Black said. “I have friends that have and the pictures are so fun and happy; I felt that was what our senior class needed. They needed color because their lives have been gray.”
This event brings joy to those participating in it, which is so far 60 seniors and 25 residents. But one high school student in particular feels ecstatic about the event.
Jaimee Hess, high school senior, has rarely left her home since Spring Break. She has a health condition that causes severe pain if she gets ill, which usually has to be resolved in the hospital. Maria Moore, Jamiee’s mother, likened the pain to having appendicitis along with other painful symptoms.
During the pandemic, Hess went once to the bookstore on a slow day, but her mother said she has not even gone to the grocery store throughout this time. Attending the Color Run will be a big deal to Hess and Moore.
While Moore is very precautious about her daughter’s health, she felt excited seeing her daughter exhilarated by the idea of going to the event and seeing her friends. Moore also trusts that the event is safe, which is why she was willing to make the move.
The Color Run’s COVID-19 guidelines will include: releasing kids in groups of 10 and two minutes apart. Participants will take masks off only when running, then will be asked to put them back on when they cross the finish line. The event will also have medical staff attending and hand sanitizer placed around.
“We’re trying to find a way to make it as normal as possible,” Black said.
Normalcy is difficult to achieve during the pandemic, but Project Graduation has been around for over a decade, making an effort to give high school seniors a fun graduation that is alcohol and drug-free. Their intention is to lessen the car accidents which occur after graduation parties due to teens drinking and taking drugs.
Like last year, the typical graduation celebration might not happen, so they had to think on their feet and find a replacement. Funds raised from Project Graduation events will go toward a graduation raffle in an outdoor setting.
“I feel it’s important we are dripping with support for our seniors,” Black told the Hays Free Press/News-Dispatch. “We don’t want our children left behind.”