On Saturday, Oct. 22, you’ll see the streets of SaddleBrooke filled with walkers wearing sky-blue shirts and lots of smiles, too. This annual walk benefits programs such as Kids’ Closet and tutoring and enrichment programs for kids in San Manuel, Mammoth, Hayden, Oracle, and as far north as the San Carlos Apache Reservation, through the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach committee.
This year, 3,257 children received full school wardrobes, books and toiletries. Other programs provide tutoring, scholarships, and special summer enrichment programs for area youth.
The 15th annual walkathon, a community tradition, will get under way at 7:45 a.m., with a warm-up session at the SaddleBrooke Clubhouse, 64500 E. SaddleBrooke Blvd. The walk will begin at 8 a.m., on a signal from membership vice president and long-time walkathon volunteer Ken Siarkiewicz.
The walk, all the way around Ridgeview Boulevard, will end at the SaddleBrooke Clubhouse. Water stations will be all along the route, along with doggie treats for our four-legged friends.
Walkers will have a choice of delicious foods at a full hot breakfast, and great prizes at a raffle.
New this year will be a continuously running slide show of past walkathons, and an area where 2011 sponsors will host a can display their products and services.
Our grand marshal this year is 94-years-young Florence Madas. Florence truly represents the spirit of volunteerism, and has worked with the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach program for 10 years. As a side note, her sister, who lives in Texas, knits almost a hat a day for the kids at the Kids’ Closet, and donated 200 of these caps last year to the store.
We hope you’ll be there! It’s easy to get in on the fun, and to get some healthy exercise and help very worthwhile programs for youth at the same time.
You can register for the walkathon in person at the Community Outreach Office, Suite L, in the commercial shopping center in SaddleBrooke. A friendly volunteer will help you register and pick out a T-shirt or T-shirts, too.
You can also sign up online at www.community-outreach.org, and pick up your shirt at the office or at the event on the morning of Oct. 22.
It is also possible to register the morning of the walkathon, but it’s best to register as early as you can, so you can be sure to get your shirt size.
Registration is $25 per person and $15 for children over 10; dogs walk for free.
Raffle tickets are $1 each or six for $5. We’ve heard of at least one spectacular prize, especially if you like granite!
SBCO’s office in Suite L hours is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday. For more information, call the office at 825-3302.