Yesterday was the WELS Kid's Marathon final mile. What an awesome event to watch and put on.
I was up late Friday night stuffing the goody bags each participant would receive. Besides some coupons, each kid received a water bottle, jump rope, some quench gun, and a glow in the dark super ball. After stuffing almost 200 bags, I decided which songs to play during the event and had to burn them on CDs. Ends up I had only 1 remaining blank CD and I needed 2. I ended up burning the pre-race CD with songs thought kids would like and a few the adults would like. I had on some Taylor Swift, Hannah Montana, High School Musical and then I added some Beatles and 'Weird Al'. I did hear some compliments on the music so I guess it was good.
I woke up early and quick went to Walgreen's for new blank CDs and some Ice and was at the facility by 6:40. Too bad the gates were not opened until just after 7:00. I got the second CD burned during this time. Once inside, we started setting up tables, registration, the finishing chute, etc. We were good to go when the first participants started arriving around 8:45.
The first CD started right on time at 9:00 and I just made sure everything was in place, went over the announcements with the announcer and chatted with a lot of the people there. Bango, the Milwaukee Bucks mascot, showed up and the kids had a lot of fun with him. He even did the warm up stretching with the kids and even ran the first 1/4 mile! The first CD ended right on schedule at 9:53 and the National Anthem went off at 9:55. At 10:00 the race started and off they went.
197 kids were signed up but only about 130 to 140 were here this day. A lot had football games or recitals. They still will get their awards. Some of the kids were racing this. And a short little girl, maybe 5th grade, was leading the whole race until about 200 meters to go. I was pulling for her to win but she ended up in about 4th or 5th. I placed myself just after the finish line and gave high 5's to every kid as the finished. Right after me was the medals that went around each of their necks. The medal turned out to be petty cool, I will have to take a picture and show you.
After all the participants finished, we gave away a lot of prizes that were donated from a lot of the local athletic stores and some of the professional teams. I didn't get much of a chance to see this as I was beginning to clean up.
Lots of compliments from people which was good. I didn't hear any complaints the day of the final mile so another plus. All the volunteers did an awesome job helping the kids stay safe and have a good time. Lots of water, bananas, apples, granola bars, and cookies were donated for the kids to drink and eat so no one left with out something.
While cleaning up, Gwen, one of the committee members came up to me wit 2 water cups and asked if I was thirsty. I said no (I just had a bottle of water). She asked me again which i found odd and I knew she heard me and then I realized what was going on. I was doused with about 6 or so cups of cold water. I wasn't drenched and it did feel good as it was in the lower 80's by this time and sunny.
I really think it most had a good time, not only during this final event, but also all summer longs doing all the reading and running/walking. I was told this by a few parents and I really think this will become an annual event. I have even been given the use of the facility again for next year already. BONUS! I am really looking forward to the feedback from the parents and kids soon.
Oh, we also had a photographer at the event and I can't wait to see what he shot. I will definitely share so of those.
There was one school that had 10 kids who all could not show up on Saturday, so today, Melissa and I went down there and they had their own final mile complete with extra food and water. Melissa put the medals over there head after they finished and she had a good time.
I would have to say this Kid's Marathon was a major success. Next year should be even bigger and I expect twice as many to sign up. We will see. I will keep you all up to date on it.