Run Forrest Run!

Interact works at annual Bubba Gump event

At the break of dawn of September 20th Interact Club members from various high schools including: Irvington, American, and Mission gathered outside the arched gates of Paramount’s Great America to attend the annual “Run, Forrest, Run, 5K” race. The race, which takes place along a 5-kilometer route around Paramount’s Great America, was scheduled to begin at 8:00 in the morning, and by 7:30 droves of participants and spectators alike had lined up across the starting line. Each of the runners was charged either $30.00 for adults and $20.00 for children. The acquired funds were to be used to benefit the United Way, an organization geared towards advancing the people’s education, health, and income.

The Interact Club volunteers were assigned to specific stations along the length of the course to raise the spirits of the runners while ensuring that everyone stayed on the charted course. Furthermore, after the racers had passed, club members were to help expedite the clean up process by removing the arrows taped to the ground as well as ferrying the cones back to the main gate.

The event started off with a brief speech detailing where to go, what to do, and even how to arrange yourself before you go (fastest runners up front, slower walkers in the back). This was followed by a surprise appearance by Spongebob who made his way up onto the stage to help cheer the runners on. Approximately half an hour later, the first of the runners pulled into the pavilion adjacent to the central theme park. Here, lunch was served to the tune of a local rock band for both participants and volunteers alike, and it was also during this time that free tickets into Great America were handed out to Interact Club volunteers who had partaken in the event. When asked about his thoughts on the event, senior Andrew Phung exclaimed, “Since I love doing service, and I have for three years now, it makes me glad to be able to cheer people who are running for a cause” Overall the Bubba Gump Run Forrest Run 5k Event was an enjoyable event and an excellent opportunity for service hours.