SANDWICH – Open Door clients celebrated fall, fun and healthy living by participating in The Great Pumpkin Run, a virtual 5K, on Nov. 19.
Open Door provides services and programming for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Staff members work to offer a variety of opportunities, such as the virtual 5K, in order to provide well-rounded life experiences for their clients.
“This has been perfect for those who are slower walkers and wheelchair users because they can be included with everyone else,” said Debbi Bewley, Open Door caseworker. “Virtual races are becoming very popular, and they fit well with our guys. There is no set time frame and you can take as long as you need to complete the mileage.”
Open Door staff kept records of the mileage each participating client clocked over a six-week period. Some individuals walked in groups around the Sandwich community, while others paced on a treadmill. Once the weather turned cold, a large group traveled to Yorkville, and visited “Go For It Sports Dome” in order to finish their 3.1 miles.
When walking in the sports dome, client Mark G. exclaimed, “I am so happy!” Jim K. said he loved walking and wanted to go back to the sports dome right now.
The event concluded with 42 clients earning a race medal and a sweatshirt. One caseworker played Olympic-themed music as he presented his group with their 5K medals. All of the participants were excited, happy and proud of their accomplishment and are looking forward to participating in next year’s event.
Client participation in fun activities like the virtual 5K are possible because of the donations Open Door receives from community members. To learn about Open Door or to make a donation, visit odrc.org or call 815-786-8468.