Volunteers Make Thanksgiving Drum Stick Dash Possible at The Rescue Mission

This Thanksgiving at 9 am, the Rescue Mission’s 12th annual Drumstick DASH will welcome about 13,000 runners, walkers, strollers, and four legged friends to “move their feet so others can eat.” Pulling off such a huge event takes many dedicated volunteers.

Hank Wallace has served 10 years as “Crowd Control Director” and oversees 40 other volunteers. “Crowd control has a team at the starting line to make sure everyone is gathered in the proper waves. Others make sure runners and walkers know where to go and help direct traffic early in the morning,” says Wallace. “I love standing in the sea of people that morning knowing that we are all of the same mind–coming together for the purpose of helping others.”

Along with the army of volunteers assisting the week of the Drumstick DASH and on race day, more than 100 others will serve during the Mission’s annual Thanksgiving Feast, which feeds hundreds of people from the community in addition to shelter guests.

Hank Wallace (right) with Crowd Control volunteers in 2014

“The holiday season is a busy time for us and requires lots of volunteers to help make sure our guests have a nice time,” says Rescue Mission Volunteer Manager, Karl Stewart. “We are so thankful to have hundreds of people eager to spend time on their Thanksgiving Day to serve others in the community.”

The 12th annual Drumstick DASH has already broken one record and the Rescue Mission hopes to break more.

“Last year corporate sponsorships accounted for a record $136,000 of our fundraising total, and we have surpassed that by 14% this year,” says Chief Development Officer Tracy Altizer. “It’s so amazing to see the community support grow year after year, and our corporate partners really seem to have a great time with it.”

“Last year, the Drumstick DASH raised over $265,000 for the Mission—the most in the event’s history.” said Uneita Mathews, Drumstick DASH Race Director. “Along with the sponsorships, our registrations are also up compared to this time last year, which means we could be breaking all sort of records this year.”

As an added bonus, for the first time participants will have a chance to fund raise themselves while they run and walk on DASH day. The Rescue Mission has been selected to participate in the Newman’s Own Holiday Charity Challenge. It’s as simple as posting a link provided by the Mission to their individual Facebook pages, inviting their friends and family to donate in support of their efforts to move their feet so others can eat. “Crowdfunding has potential to really boost donations,” says Altizer. “We’re thrilled to have been offered this opportunity!”

To volunteer with the Drumstick DASH call 540-777-7651 or email [email protected]. Registration for the Drumstick Dash will remain open through the morning of the event. Race packet and t-shirt pick up takes place Nov. 20-22 from 7am-6pm. Register online at drumstickdash.net or in person at the Mission.


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