The event was held as a cooperative effort between the school district and City of Gobles as a benefit for the Great Strides Against Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Event coordinator Jodi Winne called the initiative a completely positive experience for volunteers, the committee, and the participants who came out on Saturday.
“Every step of the process exceeded my expectations for our first event,” Winne said. “We will definitely do this again next fall. In fact, we’re already looking for a date that won’t conflict with the busy schedules of our students and families. We want this to be an important highlight of our community and school calendar every year. And the feedback received from participants from other communities was the event was worthwhile and well organized, so our runners and walkers will be back next year.”
Gobles Superintendent Jeff Rehlander began the walk with Gobles Mayor Carol Johnson. For Rehlander, the event was a perfect example of what makes Gobles so special.
“I can’t say enough about the support we got from the City of Gobles,” Rehlander said. “They really opened up the city for us and provided the services we needed to hold a safe and successful event. It’s just another example of how both the school district and community take care of our people. Care and concern were really on display Saturday.”
Before the start of the run and walk, participants heard from eighth-grade student Mackenzie Pennell, a student diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at age four. Mackenzie thanked the hundreds who turned out for their support of a cause that she lives with every day and the sponsors and volunteers who made the event possible.
“Mackenzie Pennell is a role model for all of us,” Winne told the assembled crowd. “She comes to school every day and does what she needs to do to take care of her health, but she walks through the hallways with a smile on her face and a positive attitude. She teaches and inspires all of us to take care of one another.”