I am sure that is how many things I love about this town I live in. Everyday I find another reason, or another person that makes me love it even more.
Today I was invited into something so incredible that I could not wait to come home and tell you about it.
I chair the Relay For Life in my county. It is my passion. I live it, breathe it, have dreams and apsirations for it, and many times lose sleep and have nightmares about it.
Tonite, I don't even know that my words will adequately express my pride.
The head coach of our Boys Basketball program and the head coach of the team we were opposing tonight in regional playoffs made a little wager. They challenged each other to participate in something called Coaches vs Cancer. The goal was to raise the most money possible before the big game tonight. They had two weeks to raise it however they chose.
Our coach decided to take it to the kids. For two weeks if they brought a dollar to school they could purchase a paper basketball and write their name, or the name of someone they know or love that has had Cancer. My kids were always at my purse straps asking for "one more dollar". Of course how could I say no?
The basketball team also raised money with pledges for "hoops". I didn't get the details on this part yet, but trust me, when I do, I will be blubbering over that effort as well!
Earlier this week I was called by the coach, asking if I would be available to receive a "fake check" representing the money that was raised during the two week event. This morning the coach told me that he was sure the fundraising was much more than I would imagine, but he didn't want to spoil the suprise, so he said, "just be ready to have your socks knocked off".
He should have told me to wear waterproof mascara.
In a school district with nary more than 800 students, the check that represented the money raised bore this number: 4,209.
I can't stop saying it. I can't believe my eyes when I read it. KIDS raised $4,209 in TWO WEEKS. For Cancer research!
I am in awe. The turn out of parents and students that came to the game, just so they could see the final number and stand up for Cancer at the game was inspiring. The place was so loud that my soft little voice (yeah right), could barely be heard over the crowd. And they thanked ME for what I do for Relay. I had nothing to do with this fundraiser, but they thanked ME. How selfless is that?
One of the principals and I talked after the presentation and I shared with him that while the American Cancer Society was allowing us this year to credit that money towards our Relay, next year Coaches vs. Cancer would be its own entity. He was so sure that the kids and coaches would not stand for it, and would instead do something similar to this year under an assumed name, because they want the money to go towards our event.
I mean, come on! Can it get any better than this?
I am so proud, and so amazed, and humbled and honored by my wonderfully amazing little town - out here in the middle of the prairie.
Way to go kids of my small town!!!!!!
Oh, in case you were wondering? We won the game! And the school our coach challenged? They raised a little over 10% of what our kids did, but that in and of itself was incredible!
Every dollar means more than they will ever be able to comprehend. It is one dollar closer to a cure. One dollar more that is used to supplement treatments, provide transportation, lend support, share resources, and kick Cancers butt!