LOCK HAVEN - The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step ... or so the adage goes.
In this case, the journey of 100 miles begins with 30 or more ambitious, committed and athletic Lock Haven University students.
The young people have announced they will run a grueling marathon to Harrisburg beginning Sunday night, to deliver a message to state legislators.
Nick Hilton, a member of the LHU cross country team, speaks at a rally.
Professor Mark Cloud, head of the faculty union at LHU, addresses the crowd Tuesday.
Sometimes a big step is comprised of a bunch of smaller ones.
As for this event, it takes just over 2,000 steps to walk one mile, and 10,000 steps is close to five miles, so we're talking 200,000 steps before the finish line is reached.
If you want to multiply thse 200,000 steps by the 30 students who have already signed up, we're talking a whopping 6 million steps.
A large number of LHU students are expected to travel by bus to Harrisburg on Monday to protest Gov. Tom Corbett's plan to substantially slash funding to the Pennsylvania State System of High Education.
A smaller number of students are going to run that distance to send an even stronger message to their congressmen.
The athletes and other students turned out in large numbers Tuesday on campus for a rally protesting the cuts to higher education spending proposed by Gov. Corbett. Some officials say the cuts would mean a $13 million less for Lock Haven University this year, and a potential tuition hike of 25 to 32 percent.
The members of the Lock Haven University cross country and track and field teams say they aren't content to ride the bus to deliver their message.
Instead, they will leave the university on foot on Sunday evening and run the 100 miles from Lock Haven to the steps of the Capitol Building in Harrisburg.
Joined by other LHU students in what they are calling "The 100 to Stay Funded," runners will begin their journey with a departure rally at the Thomas Fieldhouse Circle on Sunday at 8:30 p.m.
Runners will hit the roads at 9 p.m., and anyone in attendance is encouraged to join them as they start their long trek.
Whether choosing to simply cheer loudly as they begin, run the first mile with them or run the first 100 meters with them, everyone is invited to show up and show their support.
About 30 students (both athletes and non-athletes) have signed up to participate so far and many professors are already excusing their students to participate in the rally.
For more information contact LHU track and field coach Aaron M. Russell at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 570-484-2261 or 570-916-5716.