It was a perfect day for precipitation, at least for students in East Stroudsburg who had their own water shower. The Rain Rally benefits Special Olympics.
You’ve probably never seen so many people excited for water droplets falling on a beautiful sunny day. Around 500 East Stroudsburg School District students participated in the second annual Rain Rally. Benefiting Special Olympics, the district is one of only two in the state to be chosen to hold this spin-off version of the Polar Plunge.
East Stroudsburg South High School Special Olympics Coach Aimee Ellison says, "Used for all of our Special Olympics Athletes throughout the state of Pennsylvania to be able to compete in sports and to be able to take their athletic ability to a higher level, going to regionals, going to nationals and being able to compete and have a great time and have opportunities they maybe normally wouldn’t have."
From elementary to high school, even four legged friends had their own way of splashing around. Some were well-prepared to weather the storm put on by the local fire department while others just danced their way through. Leonilda Apel came out to watch her daughter Giovanna take part.
Apel says, "You couldn’t pull her out of the water. She loves it, she absolutely loves it. She will probably be the last one out of that water."
Giovanna will be a freshman at the South High School next year. Besides Special Olympics, she’ll also be a part of their Unified Sports Program.
Apel says, "It brings tears to my eyes because this is what she’s so happy to do and loves being out here with all her friends and everybody so I think it’s an amazing thing."
While some students can’t wait to participate in more events like today’s, for others, it’s their last time.
East Stroudsburg South High School Senior Peyton Russo says, "I know these kids, special needs kids, struggle a lot throughout their life and I love just seeing them with a smile on their face and making their day, it just makes me happy."
Russo has been helping to put events like this one together since he arrived at the high school, and it’s really touched his heart.
Russo says, "I plan to come back like during the summer when I’m on breaks from college, to come help with some events here. And also at Penn State where I’m going, I plan to take part in some Special Olympics events there too."
The school district soaked in over 10 thousand dollars for Special Olympics today in Monroe County.