Alzheimer’s disease has touched most of our lives in some way or another and is one of the leading causes of death in the country. This past Saturday, I had the opportunity to participate in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Keene, NH. This is a big month for the walk with events taking place all throughout the state, including Keene, Manchester, and Portsmouth.
If you’ve never participated in a walk, I would highly recommend it. Walkers come from all over the state to support the cause and share their stories. Participants and sponsors began arriving well before 8:30 am, which is when I chose to drag myself out to Keene State College armed with nothing but a coffee and a bowl of candy to offer to the walkers. The music and energy of the people at the walk quickly roused me out of my zombie-like state. The event began with Zumba and all the walkers were invited to participate. Zumba was a blast to watch and the instructor was so talented and engaging. Zumba was followed by an emotional welcoming ceremony where stories were shared and all of the participants were asked to hold flowers in the air in honor of those lost to Alzheimer’s disease.
The walk began and a sea of supporters washed out onto Main Street to begin the walk. Walkers were able to choose from a 1/2 mile, 1 mile, or 2 mile distance and there were volunteers at every turning point to help direct us depending on the route we chose. I was with representatives from work and we all decided that the 1 mile distance would be sufficient for us. Along the way, we spotted a Walk to End Alzheimer’s sign with my company’s logo on it and stopped for a photo opportunity.
At the end of the walk, upon entering the Keene State College campus, the participants were treated to a beautiful Promise Garden filled with Walk to End Alzheimer’s pinwheel flowers — most of which had been decorated beforehand by the walkers. Participants stopped to grab their flower and then continued on to enjoy hot dogs provided by the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
A good deal of money was raised for the cause on Saturday and the fund raising will be open until October 31st, so there is still time to donate! And, if you want to participate this year, you still have the opportunity to walk in Manchester on Saturday, September 28th or in Portsmouth on Sunday, September 29th.