HUDSON FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The students of Margaret Murphy Kindergarten gathered out by the playground on Thursday morning for a single purpose. Their smiles were wide. Their cheering was loud. Their assistant principal knew what was coming.

Come one, come all. It was Silly String day.

“I was super nervous,” said Assistant Principal Melissa Whitman, freshly sprayed with cans of Silly String by students in celebration of the school completing the Ronald McDonald House Charities Reading Program. “I didn’t know how this was going to go, especially with some of the kindergarteners. They were telling me it was going in my hair, in my mouth. I’m thankful that they’re only this tall,” she said, indicating the rainbow tutu where most of the Silly String landed.

Hudson Falls kindergarteners Everleigh Mason, Laura Vernold and Stella Struwing were given the esteemed honor of holding the cans and spraying the Silly String. The three were the top-ranking readers for the kindergarten’s part of the program, which directly benefits Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Capital Region. Hudson Falls Elementary School and Intermediate School also took part in the page-turning, and also got to blast their respective principals with colorful strong on Thursday.

Assistant Principal Melissa Whitman shows off the damage after being Silly Stringed by students at Hudson Falls, N.Y.’s Margaret Murphy Kindergarten. (Photo: Jay Petrequin)

The program is about encouraging reading, but the effect on Ronald McDonald House is real, too. The three school buildings collectively raised $10,438 for the organization, by collecting individual donations from friends and family, or in some cases finding sponsors. That money will go directly to helping families struggling with serious or life-threatening illnesses.

“I’m just so proud of them,” said elementary school librarian Heather Craner, the main organizer behind the program. “For all three buildings to raise over $10,000, I had no idea we would raise even close to that – especially in our first year doing it.”

Ronald McDonald House’s local footprint includes the Krantz Cottage Family Retreat in Lake George, which opened last summer. The home is a two-family retreat for families with members suffering from cancer or other forms of debilitating illness.

The ceremony at Margaret Murphy Kindergarten also included acknowledgment of the top fundraisers. Students Sadie Brogan and Haisley Porter raised the most funds out of anyone at the kindergarten. Brogan and Porter both received an invite to tour the Ronald McDonald House with their families, to learn more about the organization.

Kindergartener Sadie Brogan is recognized as one of Margaret Murphy Kindergarten’s top fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House Reading Program in Hudson Falls, N.Y. (Photo: Jay Petrequin)

The donation is huge, and the reading accomplishment is just as meaningful for students and teachers. Getting kids reading is worth all the Silly String in the world.

“This was a perfect way to not only have them do something good for their community, but we really just wanted to promote reading,” said Craner. “This was a great way to do that.”