I had the pleasure of sitting with proud mom Erin Engelbrecht as we watched the send-off for the North Scott Special Runners this morning. The 13 participating runners will take turns hoofing it 199 miles overnight to Ames, Iowa, where the State Summer Games will be happening. The runners’ efforts to raise funds and run — each will go two miles then hand off to a team member — raised $18,858 for the Special Olympics teams affiliated with the North Scott schools and community. That whopping amount was $3,000 more than last year. Chloe Engelbrecht, a freshman and daughter of my pal Erin and her husband Corey, raised about that much herself! Chloe and eight other fabulous students and four teachers are running. So cool!
Highlights for me this morning at the send-off ceremony were seeing senior Special Olympics athlete Mitchel Tuftee sing the National Anthem and high school student Peyton Schneckloth represent athlete families to show appreciation for the funds. The money will help pay the costs for getting athletes to competitions and last year it also paid for a cool wheelchair bike that will be used tomorrow in the cycling competition. Peyton thanked the runners and gave a special shout-out to the sophomore football team and their coach Tony Stewart who participated in the annual Polar Plunge to also raise funds for Special Olympics. She presented them with one of her sister Allie’s gold medals.
The whole morning was quite inspirational and Erin and I got a little choked up when Mitchel finished up the anthem. It was a poignant moment because today marked Mitch’s last day of school before he graduates. I heard one of the educators in his classroom declare to his mom Doris and dad Randy that it was “Mitchel Day!” The class was making a trip to Whitey’s to celebrate.
The annual Special Runners fundraiser was started by the former Coach Butcher at North Scott High in 1994. So much fun to see the students supporting other students! And I can’t wait to see them in Ames! Great job!
Learn more about music lover and blogger Karen Bernick here. Please feel free to share this article or others. But please use photos with permission only – just email me with any requests. If you like this post, please consider following me here, liking my Facebook page Karen Loves Country or following me at Twitter. Thanks for reading! #Iowa #SpecialOlympics #NorthScott #KarenLovesCountry #MomLovesHerMusic