Hudson, WI July 16, 2018– The Hudson community has always has always focused on providing a quality education for our youth while taking advantage of the tremendous outdoor opportunities throughout the St. Croix Valley. When leadership from the River Crest PTO and River Crest Environmental Leadership Team sat down, they decided it only made sense to find even more ways to bring those two great traits in our community together.  With additional support from River Crest School and the Hudson Daybreak Rotary Club, a brand new outdoor classroom will open in time for school this year.
The outdoor classroom will benefit students and teachers during the school year but will also provide a space for athletes to rest during tournaments, games, and practices.
Why an Outdoor Classroom?
River Crest PTO is always looking new ways to assist teachers in enhancing student learning.  In conjunction with the River Crest Environmental Leadership team, they were many studies that identify the value of outdoor learning.   There are many studies that show the value of outdoor learning, but a recent one, published on January 4th, 2018 in  Frontiers in Psychology, was the final piece that told the team it was time to act.
The study found that 9-10 year-old children are significantly more attentive and engaged with their schoolwork following an outdoor lesson in nature. The study goes further to identify what it called the “nature effect,” which allows teachers to teach uninterrupted for almost twice as long during a subsequent indoor lesson. The study concludes that outdoor lessons may be an inexpensive and convenient way to improve student engagement, which is a major factor in academic achievement.
Enhancing opportunities for students is our primary goal. Knowing so many groups from the community were able to support this endeavor says a lot about what matters to the people of Hudson.  We are extremely thankful for the support we received from River Crest PTO, River Crest Environmental Leadership, River Crest Elementary, Hudson Daybreak Rotary, and the local Eagle Scouts,” said Heidi Fett, River Crest PTO.
Car Raffle is Enhancing Opportunity for Youth in Hudson
A key value for the Hudson Daybreak Rotary Club is Enhancing Opportunity for Youth to Create a Better Community for All.  Although it is exciting to have any opportunity to win the shiny red Ford Mustang, the value of the raffle goes far deeper than excitement. Daybreak Rotary sees it as a mechanism to immediately give back to the community. One of many examples is the recent donation given to support the Outdoor Classroom at River Crest Elementary.
With a strong history of support from the Hudson Community, Daybreak Rotary is able to select group(s) to directly support with the car raffle proceeds. This year $5,700 was committed to the Outdoor Classroom, along with another $4,200 committed to the Hudson Girl’s Youth Softball league for field upgrades.  Although this may seem like any easy task, it takes the members of the Club three months of selling tickets to achieve their goal. The club attends festivals, parades, charity events, and partners
with local business to sell tickets multiple days of each week over the three-month time period, culminating with a winner of the Mustang at the conclusion of PepperFest.
Daybreak Rotary just reached the halfway point of their 2018 car raffle goal.  The hope over the next month is that community continues to support the car raffle as it has in the past and helps the club exceed their 2018 goal.  Exceeding the goal just allows the club to donate more dollars directly back into the community.  Over the next month when you see the shiny red Ford Mustang and Rotary members outfitted in their white and blue Rotary shirts, stop by and take a chance on winning a great car while more importantly investing in Hudson’s youth.
Our club gears up every year for the car raffle. Although it is by far the most work of any of our fundraisers, there is a sense of instant gratification knowing the dollars instantly impact our youth in Hudson.  Our club is truly blessed to have such great support from local businesses as well as the community as a whole in this endeavor,” said Chris Wood, Hudson Daybreak Rotary.