The Kalamalka Caring Klowns led participants in the 20th North Okanagan Hospice Society Hike For Hospice Sunday, June 5, at Vernon’s Polson Park. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

The Kalamalka Caring Klowns led participants in the 20th North Okanagan Hospice Society Hike For Hospice Sunday, June 5, at Vernon’s Polson Park. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

Vernon Hike For Hospice raises $15,000

Event returns to the North Okanagan for the first time in seven years

Rain couldn’t dampen the enthusiasm for the return of Hike For Hospice.

The 20th Hike for Hospice in support of the North Okanagan Hospice Society (NOHS) on a cool, rainy Sunday morning, June 5, at Polson Park raised more than $15,000.

The funds will help offset the cost of end-of-life care, respite care, community outreach and individual and group bereavement counselling.

Hike for Hospice is a national event but hadn’t been held in Vernon since 2015.

“I just think it is really great for the community to get together, and do something after COVID, we’ve been apart too long,” said Lisa Mathews, NOHS executive director. “From a public health perspective community is really important for our mental health and well-being and combining that with getting out and exercising, which is important for our physical health and well-being, it is a great combination.

“The Hike for Hospice’s 20th anniversary was a really great opportunity to bring this event back and we hope to do it every year from now on.”

Sixteen teams and 49 individuals registered for the run, plus a number of people who registered at the event. Nearly $12,000 was donated online, and another $2,500 at the event.

The top fundraising team was The Sovereign Striders with $3,175, while the top individual was Kim Taylor with $2,200. The largest single donation was $1,000.

A volunteer from Ladies World warmed up the crowd, and the Kalamalka Caring Klowns provided some additional cheer before leading hikers on the trek. Dozens of volunteers also committed time and energy to the event.

Hikers were encouraged to do one or more laps of a two-kilometre route through the park using the boardwalks over the marshlands and back to the park pavilion.

Even though it was raining, the vast majority completed the two laps

The event’s major sponsor was Alternatives Funeral and Cremation Services. Other sponsors were Your Dollar Store with More, Sproing Creative and Wayside.

READ MORE: Vernon Hike For Hospice returns

READ MORE: Hike helps Hospice serve community


@VernonNews
roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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