Words by Alyssa Stevenson 

We love this city. One of our big goals here is to give back as much as we can, which means a myriad of things. There are so many needs in our city it can sometimes be confusing as to what we can help with. So we're going to start a quarterly round up of upcoming fundraisers, events, meet ups and ways that you can lend a hand to your community. Read on to find out how you can give back. 

Have an awesome fundraiser that directly benefits our community coming up? Keep us updated! Email to be included in the next round up. 

Calhoun Color Run  - Calhoun students need access to more technology, and you need some fresh air and a nice jog. Okay, maybe you don't, but the technology part is super important and fresh air and a nice long walk never hurt anyone. Increased technology access in our schools means the possibility of more engaging tech-based student interaction in class, which helps our students think deeper and connect to the content better. Even if you aren't a big runner/walker/fresh air breather, but you're supportive of increasing the access to technology in our schools, you can donate online

Touch a Truck is an interactive fundraiser for Explorium Denton, a group working to create an interactive children's museum in Denton. Explorium is all about creating awe and wonder through interactive hands-on activities that help create deeper learners in our kiddos. Touch a Truck is an opportunity for many of our 'littles' to live out their dream of climbing onto a firetruck, jumping into a tractor, hovering under a helicopter and seeing big construction equipment up close and personal. For $2 a person, this is not a bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon. The founder, Anyah Martinez told us that there will be food trucks, fun stations to keep the exploring up and pictures with Batman. She also suggests stopping by the Cornerstone Cooperative Preschool for their annual Pancake Dinner with your worn out kiddos afterwards. 

Arts All Night - This is the 2nd Annual Arts All Night, a family friendly, everyone is included, all the fun all night long event to support Greater Denton Arts Council. GDAC supports more than just the visual art center on Hickory, their mission is to support, promote and encourage the arts in Denton. This happens through support of the performing arts through Campus Theater, supporting individual artists, partnering with local festivals and increasing arts education in the area. Join in for a night of art education, karaoke, screenings of cult classic films and more to help support the arts in our area. 

The Kiwanis Club of Denton may be derailing your 2016 diet goals, but at least it's for a great cause. Taste of North Texas, the East Side Crawfish Boil and a Pancake Supper all help to benefit an annual back-to-school backpack and school supply initiative, the Tiny Libraries Project and the Kiwanis Eliminate Project, which helps to eradicate worldwide diseases. You are bound to be hungry at some point, so make the forkful count for more than calories to be burned. 

Register for the Great American Clean Up with Keep Denton Beautiful to pitch in a hand and clean up Denton, ya filthy animal. Denton has a not so great habit of littering, in our ditches, around our square, in parking lots; just look around and you're bound to spot a piece of trash. Keep Denton Beautiful organizes the local chapter of the annual Great American Clean Up to help combat the litter. Think of it as a Denton wide 'spring cleaning.' Grab some work gloves, throw on some sunscreen and grab a couple of buddies to help toss the trash. 

Fit to Serve is a partnership between CrossFit Denton and Serve Denton, helping to support the Wheeler House. Wheeler House is a family shelter and clinic that provides assistance to single mothers and their children. Fit to Serve is a CrossFit competition that raises proceeds to help go towards operations expenses. If burpees and squats are your jam, sweat a little more to help out some of the most vulnerable in our community.