Many area student crossing guards will be leaving Saturday for a three-day trip to Washington, D.C., and other historic spots as part of an annual year-end activity for those who earn it, two of those involved with the event said.
Sixth-graders from 12 area schools will be leaving before 6 a.m. for the trip, which has been taking place for more than 60 years, said Cam Morris, director of sales for Eastern Travel/Oneonta Bus Lines. The company has been providing the transportation for the trip that entire time, she said. It took over the planning and booking about 18 years ago, she said.
Schools participating include the four Oneonta City School district elementary schools, and Laurens, Milford, Charlotte Valley, Cherry Valley-Springfield, Gilbertsville-Mount Upton, Oxford, Richfield Springs and Unadilla Valley central school classes, she said.
The trip starts in the Washington, D.C., area and includes stops at the Smithsonian museums, the Capitol and Arlington National Cemetery.
The students will then travel to Philadelphia on Monday, where they will see the Liberty Bell and walk the Freedom Trail before returning to the area Tuesday.
"We just feel extremely proud that we can offer the opportunity," Morris said.
The company provides the service at a low cost, said Valleyview Elementary School fourth-grade teacher Melanie Ferrara, who is the trip adviser for the Oneonta schools.
Sixth-grade students who fulfill their safety patrol responsibilities and meet conduct requirements during the year can participate, she said. If a student can't afford the fee, there are fundraisers and other opportunities that allow them to participate, Morris said.
It provides an opportunity to see some of the history they have experienced over the years, she said.
Overall, she said, about 350 students will travel on eight buses this year.