With co-curricular budgets tight, cross country teams aren't always at the top of the list for new equipment. That's one of the reasons why the Appleton West Terror Cross Country team has a special connection with the Community First Fox Cities Marathon.
"I'm not sure I can fully express the connection we feel with this event," shared Coach Terry Gross. "We've used t
he funds to pay for uniforms, warm-ups, and general supplies needed each year. This year we used some of the money to rent a large van to take our runners to the NCAA National Cross Country meet in Madison!"
Each year, the student-athletes and their friends and family volunteer at the first water station. For their efforts, they "earn" a donation from the marathon.
"The marathon is an opportunity for our team to give back to the local running community. So many of the runners say 'thank you volunteers' as they run past. It is heartwarming for us to know we were able to help them chase their goals," said Terry. "The kids always leave inspired."
Coach said the team loves working at their station, but, "unfortunately for our athletes, they need to arrive around 5:30 Sunday morning coming off a cross country invitational the Saturday prior. High School students start the morning moving slow; but, once the light of day arrives and the wheel chair competitors fly past, they are eager for the runners approaching."
He also shared a standing tradition involves the "dreaded" Vaseline board.
"Each year the athlete who diligently greased the board and made it available to the runners gets to nominate his or her successor," he said. "Possible nominees are a topic of conversation weeks in advance of the marathon."
Thanks Terror Cross Country for being a part of our race!