SIDNEY — People from around the area came together at Tawawa Park to take part in a 5K recently. This walk, Great Strides, was to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. This was the fourth year for the walk to take place in Sidney.
Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is, according to www.cff.org, “A life-threatening genetic disease that primarily affects the lungs and digestive system, CF clogs the lungs, leading to life-threatening lung infections, and blocks the pancreas, leading to a lack of enzymes released to help break down the vital nutrients in food.”
Great Strides began with Chairperson Tammy Bemus welcoming the participants and opening with a prayer.
“Following the opening prayer, the Shelby Co. Sheriff’s Color Guard presented the colors followed by the singing of our national anthem by the Fairlawn Choir,” said Bemus.
Other activities available were Kyle Winner and TAM 105.5 providing music and a live broadcast, Safety Pup from the SPD, Scarfie from the Shelby County Animal Shelter, and the Sidney Fire Department providing an up-close view of its aerial ladder fire truck. The Anna Cheerleaders performed a cheer, “Walk for CF – Find A Cure” and helped to hand out bottled water and encouragement along the route.
The returning teams were: Benjamin’s Buddies, Carter’s Crusaders, Megan & Vincent, The Force and Wyatt’s Warriors. There were also two new teams: Zane’s Soldiers and Employees from Team Emerson.
“Each team introduced their respective VIPs who battle cystic fibrosis, followed by a spirited performance from the Fairlawn Choir of the hit song by One Republic, I Lived,” said Bemus.
There were approximately 500 people who participated in the walk.
After the walk, participants were treated to snacks and drinks provided by local families, Walgreens of Sidney, Sidney Foodtown, Advance America of Sidney, Karoc Marathon, Dannon of Minster, Meijer of Troy, Sidney First United Methodist Church, Emerson and Northwood Elementary Schools.
“Following the walk, individual team totals were announced and the teams celebrated the collective event and online fundraising year to date total of over $21,000,” said Bemus.
All proceeds from the walk go to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the premier leader in the search for a cure for CF.
“Community fundraising events by the Sidney Great Strides teams will continue through December and we welcome everyone to follow our Sidney Cystic Fibrosis Walk Facebook page for additional fundraising event times and locations in the Sidney/Shelby County area. Anyone wishing to contribute towards a Sidney Great Strides team may also donate online at http://greatstrides.cff.org.” said Bemus.
The walk took the combined efforts of many people to organize and see it through.
“We wish to thank the event planning committee and our volunteers with food, registration, photography, and fundraising tents for making this year’s event a wonderful success,” said Bemus.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News