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Run, Run Reindeer! Volunteers assist in 5K Walk/Run in Ontario

January 3, 2013

With races such as the color run and glow run gaining recent popularity, 5K walk/run races have become a great way for nonprofits and community organizations alike to raise critical dollars and awareness  for their respective causes. On any given month, it won’t surprise you to find one of these races occurring in the Inland Empire. Many of which, look for large groups of volunteers to help them plan and execute the races.

Below is an account from Alex Drey-Mulari, AmeriCorps VIP Fellow for THINK Together who, with a group of volunteers, assisted with the Reindeer Run on December 8, 2012 that benefited the Ontario-Montclair Promise Scholars program.

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On a dark and frosty morning, before even a hint of sunlight appeared, a gathering of volunteers was happening. They congregated in the concrete fields of the Citizens Business Bank Arena, and huddled around their tents for warmth. Quietly and quickly they donned their jingling antlers and prepared for the onslaught of people that would be coming shortly. They set up the posters, and colored with crayons. They arranged the name tags and gobbled down snacks. Before long the sun was warming the still air, and then they arrived.

With a hustle and bustle the runners arrived, eager to start on their morning quests. The volunteers at THINK had little time, to line them up and pass out the tags. The children were brave to accept such a task, to run a mile or maybe even 3 and 1/3rd. The volunteers cheered as their children took the starting lines. Some of the toddlers could only but wobble, but that did not deter them from entering the squabble. The runners bunched and crunched, and sprinted and shifted. All the while the volunteers protected and kept watch, to ensure their kids would not be crushed!

As they returned round to finish line they found a mass of encouraging people. They hooped and they hollered for the kids as they heaved themselves home. Quite an impressive sight to see such spirit from the children, since I know I could not have done so with such zeal. The children were reunited with proud parents, who showered them in gifts and kisses. As the festivities ended the volunteers were still busy, packing and shoving their work from before. At last the long morning had came to end, and the volunteers left as friends.

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Be sure to check out the HandsOn Inland Empire Volunteer Opportunity Calendar to see if there are races in the area that could use your assistance.

For more information on THINK Together visit: www.thinktogether.org. For more information on the Ontario-Montclair Promise Scholars program visit: http://omsd.omsd.k12.ca.us/promise_scholars/

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