Bass Pro Marathon Neighborhood Challenge
The De L’Aware Pyratts & Pyxies were shipwrecked at the corner of University and Delaware, roughly at 19 1/3 miles into the marathon. The tunes and cowbells were loud, and the “arrrrrrrghs,” “ahoy mateys,” and rum were flowing. The Pyratt skeleton blew in the wind from the wrecked ship’s crow’s nest while we shared the bounty of sport gels, sport beans, M&Ms, and Gatorade (and seriously, rum). All the gold doubloons in Springfield could not have distracted us from our mission that morning as we cheered the runners on. We helped a runner celebrate her birthday, and we helped a runner support a friend running her first marathon in NYC. We made new friends and had a blast with the ones we already had. Isn’t that what these neighborhoods are all about?!?
On Nov. 9, 2019, volunteers scoured the neighborhood for materials left curbside, and residents brought trash, yard waste, mattresses, metals, and electronics to the parking lot at Westminster Presbyterian Church. At least fourteen mattresses (two trailer loads) were delivered to the Lone Pine Recycling Center, and 3,400 pounds of metals and appliances were recycled.
Nativity scene animals found new homes, a large sectional and a pool table moved across the street to be discarded, volunteers came from every corner to help, and new community connections were developed. Special thanks go to the Youth Volunteer Corps and coordinator Roger King, the Boy Scouts and leaders of Troop 16, and neighborhood volunteers.