Walkers and runners ‘Light Up the Night’ to raise funds for local causes

11 years ago

    PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Eighty community members joined in a local effort last month to raise funds for two local causes while promoting a healthy lifestyle.

“Light Up the Night” was a 5K Fun Run and Walk sponsored by TAMC and the Presque Isle Kiwanis Club and held Nov. 15.
“We were thrilled with the turnout and hope to make this an annual event,” said Dawn Poitras, event organizer. “Not only does this event offer a fun, healthy activity for the whole family, but it raises dollars to support a local need.”
Poitras, who manages TAMC’s rehab and therapy services and also happens to be the current president of the local Kiwanis Club, saw a way to combine a heart-healthy activity with raising funds she knew both her department and Kiwanis Club needed. All proceeds of the Light Up the Night 5K Fun Run and Walk benefitted TAMC Cardiac Rehab heart health education efforts and the Kiwanis Club of Presque Isle’s Christmas projects for community members in need. Each group received $700 from the event.
Since the event took place at night, glow-in-the-dark necklaces and glow sticks served a dual purpose of adding fun to the event, while making walkers and runners more visible to traffic. Donning the glowing items were 26 walkers and 54 runners. The groups traveled a loop from the Pinkham entrance of TAMC’s A.R. Gould Memorial Hospital through local streets to Mantle Lake Park and back to TAMC.
Trophies were awarded to the top male and female runners in three age categories.  Winners of the under-20 category were Trevor Levesque (21:00) and Taylor Williams (23:40), both of Presque Isle. Earning trophies in the 21-40 year old bracket were Susan Plissey (22:11) of Stockholm and Eric Crouse (27:01) of Houlton. Winning in the over 40-and-over category were Frank Bemis (22:45) and Ellen Bemis (25:29) of Presque Isle.
Poitras was particularly proud of four race finishers: Misty Cannon of Washburn, Cheryl Marchand of Limestone, Paula Raymond of Easton and Barbara Turner of Caribou. The four TAMC employees recently successfully completed a nine-week Couch to 5K training program with Poitras. The group was the inspiration for Poitras in coming up with the Light Up the Night 5K to begin with.
“I’ve had the privilege of participating in the [Couch to 5K] with some wonderful co-workers at TAMC,” said Cannon. “Tonight, we accomplished running our 5K as well as running for 33 minutes straight. This is a huge accomplishment considering none of us did much more than run to our cars to get out of the weather.”
Poitras was on hand to personally cheer for and congratulate each of the women as they crossed the finish line.