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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Irvine Lake Mud Run update with pictures!

When something presents itself, it’s ok to just go with it. The Irvine Lake Mud Run, took place the weekend of April 10-11. This is a perfect example of that, just letting it happen.

Gavin’s Groupies made the OC Register, OC weekly, and this is something that was not planned necessarily!

My lifelong friend from high school, John, asked me a few months ago if he could use Gavin’s Groupies as his team name for the mud run that he had been wanting to sign up for. Of course, I said sure. He signed up a four man team, named Gavin’s Groupies and all was fine. I thought, this would be a good way to promote for VisionWalk in June, he could wear his VW shirt from last year, and maybe one or two people would ask him what it was, etc. Promotion anyway you can get it, especially when it’s free and easy.

I wasn’t even planning on going to the mud run, this was John’s thing and there was no reason other than us to cheer him on to go. We had our Night without Light weekend event the following weekend, and had plans to tie up all the loose ends for that. Just when you think you have it all planned out, its not. I want to insert a big fat HAHA here. Because it is a little funny.

A few weeks after the team was formed, John began telling me that “so and so” signed up, we were up to 20 people on the team, etc. Every week it seemed as though another 20 people were added. Needless to say, within 2 months, we had 180 people signed up under Gavin’s Groupies team. It turned out we continued recruiting and with a cause, since everyone was wondering what GG was all about. When they told their friends about the cause, then they jumped on board, and it was a complete snowball effect.

WOW. 180 people, the largest team ever at the Irvine Lake Mud Run.

They ended up giving us a booth, so this turned into a full on fundraising event. We had our staff of family working the booth, selling our T-shirts, wristbands and signing people up for our newsletter and VisionWalk, talking to people about the Foundation Fighting Blindness. We had our picture boards of all our past events, so people could see what we have done. There was bright orange EVERYWHERE! People from high school, I have not seen in many many MANY years signed up. Old friends, new friends, family, friends of friends, strangers all coming together in the name of Gavin’s Groupies and to raise awareness of blindness. What a true blessing of a weekend. It is not something I could ever had imagined happening or even thinking of a mud run being so impactful? When you hear one hundred and eighty people, in your mind you think “That is a lot of people!”. But when you see all of these people walk up in groups, individually, and the sea of orange it is really touching. Yes, they are here for a good time, a mud run, but they joined our team to help us whether they knew what they were doing or not. I think once they all walked to the Start line, it hit everyone.

Richard Blade, formerly of KROQ was the DJ/announcer for the day. He was told of Gavin's Groupies team, and what our cause was, and why we were there, and how it all evolved. We had NO idea he was going to personally talk about Gavin, us (the family) and the thanks he gave to our runners for being there to support us and Gavin. He had the mic in hand, our ginormous team was at the START line with me, Troy, Landon and Gavin standing beside him and he brought me to tears. I mean I lost it! It was so touching, especially hearing him talk about Gavin, and our efforts. Here I am a babbling fool, trying to wipe the tears from under my sunglasses, and I glance out to our team all there for Gavin. I look back behind me, and seeing my family who helped us throughout the day standing there in tears waving to us. And I cry some more! WHAT A MOMENT! I keep replaying that to over and over, and still get chills. It was the most perfect moment without planning it. I will let the pictures tell the rest of the story.

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