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Small Community Raises Big Funds

The small, largely seasonal resident community of Windermere plays host to an incredibly successful Terry Fox Run each year. In 2000, Bev Longhurst, an employee at Windermere House, learned her daughter had been diagnosed with cancer. Longhurst, with support from her co-workers, planned and held the first Terry Fox Run in Windermere, with every dollar raised supporting cancer research. The event made $2,016 that year.

The next year, and every year since, Allen and Linda Edwards have been involved in planning the event. Each year, the committee of eight or nine connects with local businesses for donations and plans a full day of activities, including a silent auction, games and face painting for kids, and a barbecue with live music to engage the entire community in the event. The silent auction is set up two weeks before the event at the Port Carling Public Library for anyone to place bids. Successful auction bidders are announced at the end of the run.

The dedication and community spirit of the organizing team, as well as the participants and supporters have made the Windermere Terry Fox Run one of the top 10 events for money raised per capita. In 2017, the event raised $27,143.25 and to date, since 2000, the Windermere Terry Fox Run has contributed $351,903.70 to cancer research.

This year, participants will head to the Windermere Village Hall on Sunday, September 16 to walk, run or cycle the 18th annual Windermere Terry Fox Run. Registration opens at 8:15 a.m. with the event kicking off at 9:00 a.m. Participants must register and hand in their pledges and choose their distance. Participants can walk, run or cycle the five-kilometre route to the Windermere Fire Hall and back or the 10-kilometre route to Brackenrig Road and back.

This year’s organizing team includes Bev Longhurst, the founding member, as well as her daughter and cancer survivor Jennifer Jackson. The team also includes Jackson’s husband Randy, the Edwards, Susan Marshall, John Roberts and Glenn O’Rourke. Not only do they organize the run, itself, but also a golf tournament in June and donation days at local businesses to increase their total funds donated to the cause.

Article by Meghan Smith

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