Hike for Hospice More Than Doubles Goal
This June 4th marked Hospice Wellington’s 19th year of welcoming families and friends to the Hike for Hospice, this year at the beautiful Riverside Park. And the day brought a welcome surprise – the $40,000 goal was truly outdone by the staggering result of $87,296.19!
Will Menzies of Magic 106 FM was the empathetic, energetic Master of Ceremonies, welcoming and guiding the over 300 participants for the day!
The event honoured both the quiet moments and the exuberance of the day in the various tents – Therapeutic Touch treatments, Art and Music Therapy and special guests from Play with Clay. Partners from The Nightingale Centre kindly participated with their wisdom. Children got to visit with Guelph Firefighters and had their own games area. Wee pups and big dogs were welcomed with treats from Boreal Dog Foods. St. John Ambulance was on site to keep all safe.
Executive director, Pat Stuart commented, “we are so delighted to see such a huge crowd of friends. I know that for some of you, your loss is very recent and feels so raw – we are here for you. For others, while your loss may have even happened years ago, your love for your person is as present as ever. My sincere thanks to you and your own sponsors – what a staggering result your caring has made possible!”
Elected representatives have been so important in carrying the message of the hospice impact and availability to their local constituents and to key government discussions. Mayor Cam Guthrie spoke on behalf of the City of Guelph while MPP Mike Schreiner and MP Lloyd Longfield shared their provincial and federal perspective on the need and impacts of hospice care.
This year’s special guests were Tammy Townsend and Carolyn Robb, of the Diva’s Team. They spoke about being participants in the Palliative Day Program at Hospice Wellington, and how much it means to meet other people on the same journey and how supportive the group is for each other. They were participating in honour of one of their dear fellow group members. Decked out in their team’s pink outfits, including pink tutus and wigs, the two women acted as this year’s Grand Marshals in leading the Hike.
After a rousing warm-up from the Movati team to get people limbered up for their walk through the beautiful, wooded park path. Tammy and Carolyn led the powerful collection of people, each team in their own coloured shirts or costumes, all honouring their own special person.
Upon returning to the central park site, participants were greeted by the day’s amazing music courtesy of DJ Vibe, a BBQ, cold drinks, chips, and the most welcome surprise of ice cream from Marble Slab Creamery!
The event was topped off with the celebrations of the outstanding teams and individuals. That was followed by a Dog Parade, with the crowd judging which pup with wings, or miniature jockeys or rockstar outfits won the wonderful prize baskets from Boréal Dog Foods. Music therapist, Catherine led the group in a rousing rendition of Lean on Me as a finale for folks celebrating an amazing day together.
Special thank to the top fundraising teams such as, W.H.O., Team Durst, Tough as Teal, Keller’s
Fellers and the top fundraising team, The Divas who raised $8,400.34!
Outstanding individual fundraisers included, Ann Friendship, Paul Phillips, Kelly Gordon, Terry Spriggs, and the top fundraiser was Tammy Townsend, who raised a whopping $5,279.85!
A big salute to the day’s sponsors, without whom the event would not have been such a success:
- Scotiabank Commercial
- Scotia McLeod – Stone Scollard Advisory Group
- Boreal Pet Foods
- Zehrs Markets – Kortright Road
- M&M Meats – Clair Road
- Marble Slab Creamery
- Ron & Lynne Gourlay
- City of Guelph Youth Services
- Sunbelt Rentals
As always, a hat was tipped to veteran and new volunteers, and staff who came out to make sure the day was a spectacular one for the truly wonderful participants.