Fighting For A Cause

‘Penny Wars’ Raise Funds For Parents Of High School Student

Students at Jamestown High School held their annual “Penny Wars.” The fundraiser was dedicated this year to Hannah Hornyak and her parents, both of whom have cancer. Prior to announcing the final results of the donations, the A Cappella Choir, pictured above, performed as well. P-J photos by Jordan W. Patterson

Since 1999, students and teachers at Jamestown High School have participated in “Penny Wars,” a fundraising competition with the goal of helping a local cause. This year, the family of a high school student was the recipient of $5,000.

The annual fundraiser event typically picks a cause in the community to support. This year, donations are going to the parents of JHS junior Hannah Hornyak, both of whom are battling cancer.

Hannah’s sister, Hillary, spoke to the audience at JHS Friday and told them that life is not always fair and that people in the crowd might be going through a similar experience.

“I know that all of you chose to come here today,” Hillary said. “Thanks for showing up, and thanks for showing up each day. You’re not alone, you’re never alone.”

After the choir performed songs, class totals were announced. In total, the four classes raised $4,753.48.

Students and staff pose after Friday’s event at Jamestown High School.

This year’s total was the second most ever generated, according to Tony Dolce, student organizational adviser.

“This was a really great year I think it was the second most total we ever had,” Dolce said. “It was a very successful year.”

It was announced that an anonymous donor covered the remaining $246.52 to increase the total to $5,000. The “punishment” for some of the class advisers was getting pies to the faces while some staff and administrators were “slimed.”

A thick material, orange or green, was dumped on several people as a way to celebrate the amount of money the students raised.

Reaching the $5,000 mark meant Principal Mike McElrath would also get slimed in his suit.

According to Dolce, the majority of fundraising was done in December. Students frequently ask friends, family, teachers and local businesses to donate to the cause.

Jon Sandstrom and Michael Andalora, presidents of the senior class, were both excited with the result of “Penny Wars.”

“It went great,” Sandstrom said. “This is one of our best years. We’ve only gotten to this number a couple of times before in the past and it raises great morale for the school.”

The two were more than happy that the school was able to contribute and donate money to the Hornyak family. Andalora explained that this year’s “Penny Wars” was supposed to be themed as a “battle-even.” According to Andalora, having the event set up as a competitive event incentivize people to donate. This year, however, it was changed to fit the theme and family of this year’s “Penny Wars.”

“We took it out for the better cause, for the Hornyak family,” Andalora said. “It definitely surprised people how much we (raised). I think it’s the second highest record, which is amazing. It’s a great year.”