It was a blaze of summer and Christmas colour at Bledisloe School in Taradale on Wednesday as the youngsters dressed up and paid up (with a gold coin donation) in support of the Hawke's Bay Christmas Cheer Appeal.
And yesterday the youngsters of Port Ahuriri School also embraced the cheer appeal as they staged a mufti day for the price of a gold coin.
When the counting was done, Bledisloe School had raised $600, and the Port Ahuriri children had collected $300 - a great result which has given the appeal fund a real boost.
As Bledisloe School principal Carol Bevis put it: "It was very colourful".
"Lots of Christmas fairies and trees and Santas ... we even had an Italian ninja Santa."
She said the youngsters, along with their parents and caregivers, embraced the special dress-up day and were rewarded for their efforts in imagination and fundraising, with a lunchtime sausage sizzle.
"We believe that being part of a healthy community and being a good citizen involves helping others and this is an ideal opportunity to support this charity and to show our students how important it is to give as well as receive."
Members of the school's Parent Teachers Association also had a whip around to add to the appeal.
After the counting was done at Port Ahuriri School there was another $300 for the appeal.
"It was a fun day," one of the staff said.
"The kids had a ball being able to dress up and they knew they were doing something to help others."
Adding to the cash side of the appeal was an anonymous donation of $100, and the gift side of things was boosted by the Havelock North Business Association, which delivered three bags of gifts and goodies.
Hastings man Ron Wareham also stepped in with three boxes of glossy children's picture books, soft toys and other Christmas goodies, while a Napier woman, who asked to remain anonymous, and her 92-year-old mum stopped by with about 30 parcels of knitted clothing for children and some soft toys. They said they simply wanted to help people who needed assistance at Christmas.