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Sparkers meet in Pittsburgh

Sunday, March 30, 2014

As I am writing this, the 5th annual SPARK get together in Pittsburgh is coming to a close. The Sparkers who participated are waking up with another set of memories to take home a share on blogs,with friends and coworkers.

If you think this is about going out and running you are wrong! The run is really just to keep everyone occupied between meals! You don't have to be a runner to be here. You just have to be here to and feel the energy.

What is unique about the event, and it hit me last night, whether you are highly competitive or someone who jus want to walk 5k, this event is perfect for you. It is the atmosphere, the electricity in the air, the friendships formed (whether you are a Sparkers or not).

For Sparkers there are some "rules":
- you come here because you want to have fun
- participation in the run/walk is optional
- the last Sparker to cross the finish line is as important as the first. Spark participants have been known to 'escort' their fellow Sparkers across the finish line.
- we are ALL winners, some peeps however goes home with more bling than others (congrats Deej for winning your age group)

This event is known to attract Sparkers from all over. This year we had Sparkers from BC (yes, British Columbia), Nebraska, WI, IN, up-state NY ...that I know ... In addition to the "usual suspects suspects from OH-PA.#whatareyiuwaitingfor sorry if I forgot someone

I will be remissed if I don't mention the event and the reason for JASR. The event has a connection to the leukemia and lymphoma society and is a training run for the team in training group running the Pittsburgh Marathon in about 6 weeks. However, the run was personal for some of us. My "running partner" yesterday lost her husband to lymphoma almost a year ago. Don, I never met you but your wife told me about one hell of a person, husband, and father. I know you ran with us yesterday! Two Sparkers told me about two 'kids' diagnosed with leukemia ... I want to tell you, your family and friends - "cancer is not contagious - hope is" Fight like hell! Wearing my team "spokes of hope" apparel I am hoping to send cancers -leukemia,lymphoma and all the rest of you "terrorists" a message ... We don't give up. Not only do we find money and do research to take you out, we also make families stronger to fight you.

Just one more reason to show up next year!!!
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