Vernon’s 2018 Parkinson’s SuperWalk attracted 97 walkers, family and friends and raised over $18,000.
The 17th annual Parkinson SuperWalk is the single most important national fundraising event of the year for Parkinson Societies in Canada. The goal is to raise more than $3 million nationally and $325,000 in BC. Parkinson SuperWalk took place in 90 communities across Canada, with 14 events held in B.C. throughout September.
In Vernon, the walk took place the morning of Sept. 8 in Polson Park. Local facilitators said they were very pleased with the turnout, calling it a “huge success.”
“It took a good-hearted people from our City to get us to this dollar to help fund finding a cure for Parkinson’s,” said Co-facilitator Laura Wilson. “To the Vernon Parkinson’s Support Group Members. Thank you for your Volunteer time during the event and your ongoing strength. Priceless.”
For the event, Vernon Lions Club cooked breakfast for 84 participants with food donated from the Safeway downtown. Wilson issued a huge thanks to both and for all that participated in making the walk a success including.
Abby and Kristi Bieber from 30 Minute Hit led the walkers through a warmup before Don Macleod, Scottish Piper who for several years, led the walkers around the Polson Park Track.
For those unfamiliar with the disease, one of the many side effects is to sometimes freeze up for a few seconds to a minute. The disease disproportionately affects people over the age of 60. It is the second most common degenerative neurological disorder after Alzheimer’s disease and affects an estimated one per cent of the population over 60. Only five per cent of all cases of people with Parkinson’s Disease are diagnosed before the age of 60.
The group also wanted to recognize Lisa Sousa of Vernon Recreation for her help with the permit, photographer Edie Schleiss for photographing the event and St John Ambulance Services for being on site.
Kalamalka Caring Clowns entertained the kids with balloons and crazy outfits while Neko Wong painted the faces of several participants.
Event coordinators also shared their appreciation for others who worked behind the scenes, making sure the event ran smoothly. This included: Robin Hood Security who kept the grounds safe and John Gardner who made sure the gates were opened and the power was running, to all the local businesses that graciously donated items for our Silent Auction and to Rhona Parsons who dedicated the past 5 years organizing the Superwalk.
“We hope we made you proud,” said Wilson.
Proceeds from SuperWalk go to research and support services provided by Parkinson Society British Columbia. For families living with Parkinson’s disease, the walk represents not only the opportunity to raise funds for research, education and support; it also gives walkers the chance to meet other people who are living with the effects of this devastating condition.
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