The Abilities United Aquathon is truly a special time for the community to come together and celebrate all abilities, from the littlest of infants to our respected seniors. Everyone is a champion for the day! Year after year, donors, participants, staff, volunteers and community members dedicate thousands of hours of work and fundraising to make the Abilities United Aquathon incredibly successful and fun! The 2011 Aquathon just set the bar higher…netting $150,000!
400 community people gathered at the California Sports Center in Sunnyvale to swim and raise money for services at Abilities United. Swimmers, representing all ages and swim levels, swam on 40 teams and were entertained by and swam with everyone’s favorite mascot, “Sharkie”, from the San Jose Sharks. You could hear the music and cheering from a block away. In addition to having fun, participants left feeling really good about their contribution to the success of the event. We owe a huge thank you to our top $10,000 sponsors, NVIDIA and Oracle, for their long-time support of this event; new corporate sponsor Lockheed Martin and returning sponsor Intuit for their $5,000 sponsorships; and Webcor their $2,500 sponsorship. Don’t be left out next year – be sure to mark your calendars for the 2012 Aquathon, Sunday September 9, at 2:00 pm.
We rely on the efforts of all of our fundraisers, some who have been with this event for 25 years. Our top 10 individual fundraisers were: Charlotte Rayfield, Marc Weeks, Michael Rayfield, Michael Skarpelos, Philip Decker, Keely Costedoat, Jesse Smithnosky, Michael Seiders, Dan Logan, and Robin Flecha.
Mike Seiders, a lifelong participant at Abilities United, moved the audience to cheers and tears as he completed the event’s first laps as the 2011 Honorary Swimmer. Each year, John Rothmann of KGO Newstalk 810 and Olympic swimmer Susan Roy make the event extra special by presenting medals to and posing for photos with the children.
In addition, the success of this event depends on volunteers. We send a special thank you to:
Bern King- Photography; Chris Ream-Emcee; Vickie Yamaoka-Food Coordinator; Douglas Tao-Video Tao & Audio Services; Raymond Chin-Video; Homestead Interact Club volunteers; One Brick volunteers; and all the Abilities United staff and Board members.
Over 30 Abilities United participants swam and raised over $12,000. Bill Hall, who is in our Adult Services program, goes above and beyond each year and won a special award for raising $1,600! We welcome new participants and corporate sponsors for 2012. To learn more about the Aquathon, view our video at www.abilitiesunited.org/aquathon and contact firstname.lastname@example.org or at 650-618-3331.