GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. - The countdown is on for the MiracleKids Triathlon this Saturday, August 18, at Lake Ann in Chanhassen. The races are completely filled up but they still encourage you to come down and cheer the racers on.
The MiracleKids Triathlon is one of the largest triathlons just for kids in America. The MiracleKids is the major fundraiser for the Miracles of Mitch Foundation, a non-profit that supports families treating a child with cancer.
Director of MiracleKids Betsy Grams and Bethany Boucher, one of the top fundraisers for the race, joined KARE 11 News @ 4.
The motto of the race is "Kids Racing for Kids Who Can't" and the idea was to produce the world's most fun triathlons for kids ages 7-17 to inspire in them a life-long passion for being physically active and for charitable giving.
Each year hundreds of kids are treated for cancer in Minnesota leaving most too sick for normal activities, let alone a triathlon.
The Miracles of Mitch Foundation calls these brave kids Mitch's All-Stars and creates their very own trading card for the kids. At the MiracleKids Triathlon, kids of all abilities do the racing for those All-Stars who are too sick to race.
This is carried out in two ways:
1. After registering, participants are mailed a packet which includes a trading card of a real Minnesota kid he or she will be racing for at the MiracleKids Triathlon. To get each racer fully inspired, race officials mark the left calf of participants with the name of the All-Star on their trading card. Kids then race in spirit for that All-Star kid.
2. Most racers also choose to raise pledges to support the foundation's grants program. To date, kids have already raised more than $270,000 for the 2012 fundraising campaign. We expect kids to raise more than a half million dollars this year, through a concept we call Kids Serving Kids.
Many fundraisers get creative with their campaigns, even holding events like silent auctions, garage sales and lemonade stands. Though kids earn recognition and prizes for fundraising, the real motivation for many truly seems to come from realizing they've made a difference in the life of kids and families who are going through a terrible struggle.
Who was Mitch? Mitch Chepokas was an active and fun-loving Chanhassen kid who lost his battle to bone cancer in 2003 at age 9. Though the cancer quickly ravaged his body, it hardly made a dent in his incredible spirit. In fact, it was when Mitch was at his sickest that his spirit shined brightest. That's when he reached out with generosity and kindness to other kids with cancer, giving them his life savings and all the encouragement he had left to give.
For more information, head to MiracleKids Triathlon.
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