To the Editor:
The Potsdam Rotary Club recently held its Third Annual Wheelchair Challenge to raise funds for the Wheelchair Foundation. The Challenge, which featured teams of four in an elimination completion relay race, was held at the Maxcy Hall Field house at SUNY Potsdam. Not only did the event raise awareness of the difficulties face by wheelchair bound individuals, it provided funds to purchase more than twenty wheelchairs for The Wheelchair Foundation.
SUNY Potsdam’s Phi Mu Alpha (Joseph VanUllen, Rob Barber, Nate Dellefavie and Matthew Morris) took first place this year. Second place was earned by Sigma Chi Coyotes of Clarkson (Aaron Connor, Adam Murliny, Obi Ezennies and Zeb Armstrong). Third place was captured by The Red Cross club, “Team Inspiration” (Bethany Gilbert, Brent Green, BeaAnna Stephenson and Emily Chambers). Best costume prizes were awarded to “The Zombies” of Alpha Phi Omega (John Dobson, Kristi Mezzano, Erin Kinney, and Dominique Paul) from Clarkson. Best team spirit was won by the Carroll family (Christa, Katie, Maggie and Olga Grant). Potsdam Central School raised the most money, over $400. Other teams participating were Dr. Stacy Howlett, InterAct (2), SUNY Men’s Basketball (2), Harris Medical and Canton Central NHS. Several individuals and community members contributed funds as well: Delta Zeta, Mr. and Mrs. Michael Griffin, Rev. and Mrs. William Cuthbert, Potsdam IGA, Mr. and Mrs. Joe Fitzsimons, Amy and Tim Flack, Zip Lid Lodging, CPH, Kay and Guy Frederick and anonymous donors.
Potsdam Rotary would like to acknowledge all participants, volunteers, and spectators. We would like to especially thank all the local businesses who made this day such a success: Potsdam IGA for the refreshment/goodie bags for every participant, Jrecks, Pizza Hut, The Village Diner, The Red Cross, and The Kids Kloset for donating the winning team gift certificates. Also, to Today’s Hair, Community Bank and Harris Medical for donating the door prizes.
Each team that participated was required to raise a minimum of $75. For each entry fee the Wheelchair Foundation matches and provides a chair for someone in need. The committee would like to express our sincere appreciation to all who made this endeavor so rewarding.
To date, Potsdam Rotary has raised funds for nearly 100 individuals, providing freedom and mobility for persons throughout the world. We look forward to next year’s challenge.
Mary Sue Foster, Chair
Potsdam Rotary, Wheelchair Challenge