Busy Weekend

To say we were busy this past weekend is a bit of an understatement. To say that it didn’t have a tremendous impact on me would also be a huge understatement. So as the weather warms up, we get more and more busy, most of you know we stay busy no matter the time of year. But this past weekend, in addition to the Shamrock Run, and the Southern Women’s Show that Fleet Feet had a huge presence at, and making sure that we had enough people on the retail side to keep the store going on a busy week we thought, hmmmm, lets add something else to our plate just to make it challenging. I had never walked in or been a part of a 3 day walk event. But when Lauren Gilbertson, The Challenge Walk MS manager came to me and asked for our help, I said, “of course what can we do”. Well here’s what we did, we spent all weekend with them, following them around town with our sound system and balloon arch. Even before the Shamrock Run Friday evening, we set up on River Street at 6am Friday morning. Honestly I thought I was in the wrong spot. Balloon arch up-check, sound system up and going-check, good music playing-check. But there wasn’t a soul in sight, as it got closer to 7am, still nothing. Except for the sounds of River Street waking up, and then without notice, 5 big school busses come down river street and out from those buses hundreds of people ready to walk for a cure of MS. They came from all over the United States and a couple from out of country. They had raised over $500,000 for their cause, and it was a sight to see. MS (Multiple Sclerosis) is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system. It interrupts the flow of information between the brain and the body. So I could see why these folks had so much passion. Off for a 21 mile walk to Wormsloe State Park, we could not be there for them at the finish because of the Shamrock Run. However, we got up on Saturday morning, and headed out to the Landings for day 2 of the walk, an 18 mile walk thru the Landings. This is when I found out that 20 or so of the participants were actually walking all 3 days of the 50 mile walk. We stayed out there from 6am until 5pm in the afternoon, waiting and watching these folks come in from their walk. Feet with blisters, sore legs, tired backs, and some of them carrying the weight of MS in their bodies. Exercising for 3 days straight is hard enough, asking your body to do it with a crippling disease like MS is nothing short of heroic, spectacular, inspiring, and I don’t know what else, you fill in the blank with whatever word you want. I wasn’t in tears, I was in awe. And now guess what, ONE more day to go. We got up on Sunday morning, went out to Tybee to set up the balloon arch and sound system waiting for these amazing folks to finish their last ten miles on Tybee Island. And as they all met in Memorial Park, with our music playing and all of their fans greeting them, they all got together to walk together, one more mile to the Tybee Pier. With the folks battling MS leading the way, it was a sight to see. We are usually used to seeing runners, fly by us during a race, this was just the opposite, 49 miles on their legs, one mile to go, MS in their bodies, need I say more. My first 3 day event, and I was proud to play a small role in assisting this amazing organization and the incredible participants walk and visit our town. So, it was 8:30pm Sunday night, and I had to then go to the Trade Center to clean up our stuff from the Southern Women’s Show. I was happy to do it, even after a long weekend with the folks of the MS Walk Savannah. I have nothing to complain about, and I can’t wait to see you all next year. THEY ARE COMING BACK, to Walk for MS in Savannah again.

Robert Espinoza
"Keep Your Chin Up for Strength, and Down For Prayer"
Fleet Feet Sports Savannah

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