Tuesday, May 25, 2010

GOTR 5k Recap

The Girls on the Run of Johnson County season-ending 5K fun run was this weekend at the Garmin campus. GOTR Founder Molly Barker visited from Charlotte, NC for the event. She visited sites, motivated the girls, encouraged coaches. She even had an appearance on Fox News! After the race, Garmin announced their new national sponsorship of the SoleMates program. This is so huge - and so cool for our council to be partly responsible for the partnership!

Packet pickup at the New Balance store on Friday evening was hectic but fun. GOTR program manager Jackie did a great job with check-in, and she had some wonderful volunteers to help!

With thanks to New Balance, we sold pink and green shoestrings to raise some funds for our program. Look how great they match these girls' NB shoes!!

Race day starts early, with coffee duty. Many thanks to our friends at Starbucks at 135th and Black Bob for the morning boost! We prepped the course by placing signage, checked in and registered runners, encouraged the runners and even did their hair! Mad props to Anna for heading that up. The girls had so much fun!

There were 160 girls that ran the race after completing the 10-week session of GOTR, all with family and running buddies. We had over 500 runners! For our first big race, that is so awesome! We on the board were totally not expecting that. Many thanks to our race directors and committee heads. One of our sponsors, Fry Orthodontics, even sent the tooth fairy to run!

Another cool occurence: a teacher from Osawatomie in Miami County was so inspired by GOTR that she worked with more than 30 girls from her school, training for the race. She picked up all their packets and drove a bus up to Olathe for the race. They had matching shirts and obviously had a blast!!

Watching the girls finish the 5k is so inspiring. You can really tell how much they have grown, how high their self-esteem is, and how proud they are. Some sprint, some walk, some do a combo of the two. But no matter how they got there - they finished!

Molly and several board members and coaches were at the finish line, ensuring that every girl received the medal she so rightly earned. I remember the medals and trophies from when I was little, and how important they were to me - and looking back they weren't nearly as significant as one of these lil' guys would have been to me!

One of the other exciting things that happened at the race: we said farewell to our council's founder as she retires to spend time with her family and her own business. Kristine has done so much for the girls and women in Johnson County. We also welcomed the new council director, Kathy Stone, to the GOTR family. We are so excited for what our future holds, and grateful for the strong foundation that Kristine has laid for us.

So to all my friends and fellow board members, thanks for a great week with Camp GOTR. Can't wait to see where we run to next!

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