Getting up early on the weekend can be tough. Convincing a group of volunteers to do it also? Even tougher. Thankfully, we have an incredible group, and I didn’t have to beg TOO hard (free coffee didn’t hurt either….)
The first volunteers began arriving at 6:00 AM on Saturday, April 23rd, 2022, in preparation for Fight the War Within Foundation’s 1st Annual Race to Fight the War Within 5K/10K. Endurance Race Services was on the scene first thing, mapping out the course and prepping the start and finish line. Marc, the manager of Howe2Run running store, came in early to open the shop and assist with packet pick up. Sponsors began setting up their booths, and The Dive began unloading the frittatas, brunch bars, and other goodies. Our FTWWF volunteers, meanwhile, set up registration, began dispersing race packets, assisted vendors, directed questions, and anything else needed to insure a great event.
The race kicked off at 8:00 AM. We had already run the numbers, and I was so proud to share the good news with the crowd, before the runners took off – we raised over $1,000 in registration proceeds to benefit the Bryan County tornado relief effort, and over $5,500 for our mission to bring an end to suicide. If I hadn’t been so exhausted, I would have been in tears!
The first 5Ker to cross completed his trek in 17:34 – incredible! Over the next two hours, the remaining 130 runners (yes – 130 runners for our first 5K/10K!) crossed the finish line. As the last participant crossed the finish line (a female who rucked the entire 10K!), the crowd cheered and the camaraderie of the day emanated throughout everyone there.
I have coordinated 5K/10Ks numerous times in the past, and, no matter how tired I am at the end of the day, there is nothing more rewarding than being able to look back and say, our team accomplished something great. We brought joy to everyone here. We worked as a team without complaint or gripe. And we raised money for not one, but TWO great causes.
All in all, a very good day, with very good friends.
Fight on, warriors.
Thank you to our sponsors!!