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August 19 - A Day in Calgary.

19 August 2009 No Comment

main-article-picture-img_6090.jpg August 19, 2009
Stage 50
Calgary, AB.

Today, the runners enjoyed a beautiful day off, thanks to the incredible hospitality of Sikh Youth Calgary (SYC). We were lucky to spend a leisurely day in the City of Calgary, getting acquainted with the local community. The SYC organized a relaxing outdoor function to welcome and greet the runners. We were lucky to have the opportunity to meet with the youth, who were not only welcoming but quickly became part of the family. Around 75 young local kids joined us for a 2-km run around Prairie Winds Park, and everyone had a great time, playing soccer, eating, talking, face-painting, and just getting to know one another. We were all very grateful for the load these kids took off our shoulders for the day, and they were all given yellow GGSCF jerseys to run with us. Later on, we were joined by local MLA’s Wayne Cao, Teresa Woo-Paw, Darshan Kang, and Manmeet Bhullar, who all spoke and expressed their gratitude towards the GGSCF’s endeavours to help children in need, all across Canada. The dignitaries all gave very gracious words of encouragement, and Manmeet Bhullar was kind enough to present the GGSCF with a plaque of the Alberta Coat of Arms. Later, we presented a cheque and complimentary yellow GGSCF jersey to the representative of Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation. Charanjeev Singh and Manpreet Kaur explain why the GGSCF is running across the country. Those in attendance were very generous and over $5000 was received in donations. Throughout the day, many runners were greeted by family living in Canada – and some even had the opportunity to meet family they had never known before! And the weather was extremely co-operative, with the sun shining high and bright throughout the entire function. In the evening, the team met up to say good-bye to one of our runners, Priya, who could not join us till the end. We wish her the best of luck and hope to see her again at future events.

Afterwords, the GGSCF headed to the local Gurdwara, where the sangat once again showed their incredible kindness by packing us up with delicious langar for the long road ahead. To end off, several members of the SYC joined us at the hotel for a friendly competition.

All in all, it was a very inspiring day, with gratitude being expressed from the youth of both GGSCF and SYC, who organized to have us all very well-fed and well-taken care of. Friendships were made that we’re sure will never be forgotten. The youth agreed to all keep in touch, and a challenge was presented to the Calgary youth to run to Toronto in the future! The generousity of the of the Sikh Youth Calgary was exactly what we needed to rejuvenate the runners – their enthusiasm certainly has filled us with the strength we need to prepare ourselves for the biggest challenge of all, as we begin climbing the mountainous terrains of the West tomorrow.
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