‘Buddy Day’ returns to Marco Island

Author: Camila Pereira Writer: Elyssa Morataya
Published: Updated:

Buddy Day is officially back at Marco Island this year after years of being held virtually due to COVID-19.

The annual Buddy Day pairs second graders from the Guadalupe Center’s early childhood program with adult volunteers.

“I think what makes it so unique is that every student walks away with a different memory. And it’s not just one thing, it’s hearing them talk about the mailboxes because they’re shaped like manatees or the fact that they got to put their feet in the water or look at the ocean,” said Dawn Montecalvo, President and CEO of the Guadalupe Center.

Big Buddies joined nearly 200 second-graders on Hideaway Beach for some outdoor learning experiences.

“Every child has their own unique memory. I think that’s what makes us all want to keep doing this because we’re making an impact on a child that they wouldn’t have had otherwise,” said Montecalvo.

Montecalvo is happy the tradition has returned to Marco Island, and she said that the goal of Buddy Day is to create memories that will impact the lives of these children forever.

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