KERSHAW COUNTY, SC — Two rival high schools are capitalizing on competition to raise money to benefit their county.
Camden High School and Lugoff-Elgin High School are also competing to raise the most money to earn donations for the United Way of Kershaw County.
Its not just to raise money, but its to build community spirit as well, said Marc Dyer a history teacher at Lugoff-Elgin High School and adviser to the schools student council.
The schools began their week-long fundraising with two separate kickoff events.
Camden High School held a Color-Me-Bulldog mile-long run early Saturday morning to get contributions.
Colorful people ran from the high school to the athletic fields, and they looked like Oompa Loompas, said John Demer, who helped DJ music with Matthew Spitzer at the finish line.
Student council members doused the runners with colorful dye, and 11th-grader Austen Haney participated even though he was in a cast.
Ill go lefty, said Haney, who is right-handed.
Senior Helen Koutroulakis sprayed runners with a water gun full of dye. She had run a color run before Saturdays.
You just have to hold your breath as you go through, she said.
Later in the day, across the Wateree River, elementary school students had the opportunity to play activities with student-athletes at their fundraising event at Lugoff-Elgin, Meet the Demons.
One Lugoff-Elgin Demon was dressed up as the mascot.
I dont even try to be anonymous, Wyatt Duval said, since most people know that its him under the giant devil-head.
As the mascot, he said he has to know how to respond when little kids poke him in the face.
He also has to make sure he doesnt injure a cheerleader with his pitchfork.
Melissa Rabon, who teaches English at Lugoff-Elgin, brought her son Wyatt to meet the demons.
Rabon graduated from Lugoff-Elgin in 2001 so she knows the tradition of the rivalry.
Its not just about beating Camden, Its about just being proud of your school, Rabon said.
And school pride was apparent in talk about the upcoming rival game.
Weve been practicing very hard so I believe Lugoff-Elgin will come out on top, said Jamerius Sumerson, a senior football player for the Demons.
Camdens expectations were also high for football and the fundraiser.
Its my senior year, I want to win the game and the money, Koutroulakis said.
Funds raised in rivalry competition
Reach Cope at 803-771-8657 or on Twitter @cassielcope