MILL HALL - The three girls know how much work goes into planning an event like this.
If they didn't beforehand, they sure do now.
Central Mountain junior soccer players Johnna Garbrick, Megan Soo and Jordan Courter combined together and chose to organize the annual "Shared Strength" 5K run/walk for their senior projects.
Central Mountain juniors, from left, Johnna Garbrick, Megan Soo and Jordan Courter, pose by the Wildcat. The three have chosen the annual “Shared Strength”?5K Run-Walk as their senior project.
The event will be held next Saturday at the high school.
"It was a lot of preparation. It took a lot of time to get the sponsor papers and the registration papers out," said Garbrick, speaking for the group.
"We selected to do this as our project because we want to bring the community together, and as the soccer team, give back to the community for everything they do for us."
This will be the third year for the event.
"The idea came across a few years prior in which we realized that we had a extremely wonderful support group between both the junior high and senior high girls' soccer teams and parents," CM girls' head coach Ryan Veltri said. "It was coined 'Shared Strength' because of the thought of strength in numbers giving back to and supporting the local community organizations/programs. It was the way the Lady Wildcat soccer program could use the families involved to come together, share a great event, and support a local program that needs our help. We have been lucky to have the community to support us and it was our way to give back."
Registration is open right up through the morning of the event. The cost is $15 per individual, and $40 for a family of four.
Proceeds will also be donated to the Relay for Life.
"We were told there was already 160 people signed up, and that was more than last year," Courter said.
Of course, this just doesn't happen overnight. It takes months and months of planning and preparation.
Sponsor, volunteers and donations are just some of the key points that need to be addressed along the path of planning.
"This year was a little easier because more people were involved in the set-up process. The three seniors, Jordan, Johnna and Megan have been a great addition and have gone above and beyond their role," Veltri said. "Tina Garbrick has been a mainstay since the initial event, without her involved, this would not be what it is today. Organizing sponsorships, which the community has been extremely giving and supportive, getting volunteers to help, donations from parents in terms of food and supplies, ordering shirts, registrations, etc., it is a never-ending process and has become a big-time event."
The course, itself, involves the participant circling the Central Mountain High School campus three times after a starting lap around Malinak Stadium. The participants finish at the entrance of the stadium.
"We used the past two 5K's as a guideline for this year. We wanted to make it bigger and better," Johnna Garbrick said. "Our parents, coach Veltri and the other soccer parents have really helped us to make sure it turns into a successful event and successful senior project. It's nice to see the community support us. We really appreciate it."
Of course, it's about the community.
"We rely on the community to support our programs at Central Mountain, this is a way for us to give back," Veltri said. "Not only is this a healthy life event, it is bringing people together, young and old, in an effort to promote healthy lifestyles and a bond between people. Our goal every year is to bridge the gap between our fine student athletes, their parents, and the people of Clinton County. We are sharing strength in the form of connecting people and building tradition. We are very proud to have an event like this linked to the Lady Wildcat soccer program and very honored for all the people involved to support our effort to do good things."