The day could not have been more beautiful for the 5th Annual Nebraska Walk Now for Autism Speaks. The Walk brought together nearly 2,000 participants to celebrate their loved ones with autism. To date we have raised almost $50,000.00, with donations continuing to come in!
Participants were greeted by nearly 30 resource fair vendors and entertainers along with various mascots and clowns. They also enjoyed free hot dogs & shredded beef sandwiches courtesy of Farmland and Cargill. A huge “Thank You” goes to SUBWAY, our Platinum Sponsor, who handed out cookies to participants and celebrated the success of their nearly $5,000.00 puzzle piece promotion that was organized by Gina Catinella (Business Consultant - Subway Development) and carried out by each of the store managers.
Alpha Xi Delta – Rho represented over 100 members of the nearly 180 volunteers that came out in force. They have raised over $5,000.00 for Autism Speaks this year and are anticipating raising another $5,000.00 at their fall fundraising “Karaoke Kampout” on November 5th. They have been exceptional supporters of Autism Speaks and are truly making a difference in the lives of children with autism. THANK YOU Alpha Xi Delta – Rho!
Walk event emcee’s Dale Johnson from KFOR and Senator Amanda McGill got the crowd excited and organized participants together for an amazing opening ceremony. Cub Scout troop 48, led by Jim Beuler, presented our nations colors and Dawn Krogh shared her talent singing the National Anthem. Many in the crowd were brought to tears with an amazing tribute by Maddie Linscomb (Joseph’s 16 year old sister) of Team “Camouflage Angel” as she sang and played the guitar to a song that she wrote celebrating her brother, Joseph.
Walk Co-Chair – Vicki Depenbusch then introduced one of her son Jacob’s personal friends… Governor Dave (Heineman) and he addressed the crowd in support of his buddy, Jacob and all those who struggle on a daily basis with autism. Top Teams & Grand Club Members were recognized and Walk Co-Chair, Jill Bailey was then led to the starting line with her top team “Isaac’s Bionicle Heroes” and Geoffery the Giraffe from Toys"R"Us. Walkers then circled the park and came back to enjoy the resource fair vendors, entertainment and raffle drawing to end the festivities.
A big THANK YOU to Walk Co-Chairs, Jill Bailey and Vicki Depenbusch along with so many committee members and volunteers who gave tirelessly of their time and talents to ensure a fabulous day for our families and friends! Also, a huge “THANK YOU” to our sponsors, resource fair vendors, team captains & walkers who made this event such a huge success.
The Autism Speaks blog features opinions from people throughout the autism community. Each blog represents the point of view of the author and does not necessarily reflect Autism Speaks' beliefs or point of view.