Help us reach one million!


Did you know that Woodruff, Wisconsin is home to the World’s Largest Penny? Sixty years ago the students at Arbor Vitae - Woodruff School wanted to know what a million was. They came up with the idea of collecting a million pennies! The Penny Parade was a fund raiser that spread across the world.  Dr. Kate Newcomb, a local doctor referred to as “The Angel On Snowshoes” had been dreaming of a hospital for the townspeople of Woodruff.  Funds were the only thing holding Dr. Kate back.

Dr. Kate's funds really started rolling in when a brilliant idea came out of the mouth of a child, from Arbor Vitae - Woodruff School.  Mr. Otto Burich, a Geometry teacher, was teaching a lesson about a million of something, but he couldn't seem to think of an example.  Then, one child said how about one million pennies.  That is how it all started from there on the class was discussing what one million pennies would look like, how much money it would be, and how long it would take to raise one million pennies.  They decided to find out.  The only question was what would they do with all of the raised money.  One child suggested donating towards Dr. Kate's Hospital. The whole school came together for this project. All of their hard work had paid off and by April they had gone above and beyond their goal.  It had only taken them 104 school days to raise the money plus an extra 100,000 pennies.  These statistics averaged out to about $115 per school day.

On Monday, February 4, 2013 the Arbor Vitae- Woodruff School hosted a kick-off assembly for the 60th Anniversary Penny Parade Celebration. The students, staff, families, friends and community members were presented with the challenge again of collecting a million pennies. Along with the old fashion letter writing campaign, a new 20th Century spin was added. The students will be reaching out to people across the world using technology such as email, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter! The hope is that the students can reach the goal of collecting a million pennies by Memorial Day weekend. The money collected during this celebration will be used to support the Dr. Kate Scholarship fund as well as support academic and community based learning at the school through the Arbor Vitae - Woodruff Education fund.