Edmonton AIDS Walk for Life 2009

The 2009 AIDS Walk for Life took place this past Sunday. Mack and I participated for the second year in a row, and began raising money for it a few weeks ago. As some of you may have known, we were in a bit of a competition, and in spite of his “Twitter clout”, I won! Well, ultimately, HIV Edmonton is the winner, but thank you to all of my sponsors who helped me raise $260 (Mack raised $210). All of the money raised from the walk stays in the community to help with HIV Edmonton’s work with prevention, education and support for those living with HIV, among other activities.

With the water bottle and reusable bag I “earned” from raising over $250

It was a beautiful, albeit brisk, day for the 5km walk, and the weather was a blessing for the event, held in Churchill Square this year. The outdoor setting made everything seem more lively, and welcomed any and all who were in the area to enjoy the festivities. Besides music and entertainment, Planet Organic and Starbucks were on hand distributing refreshments, and walkers were treated to free pizza from Pizza 73.

Churchill Square

Burlesque performer Sophie Sticke

At the same time, there seemed to be more confusion that arose out of the open space, a natural result from a latent ability to exert control over a wide area. Last year, a button we received at the end of the walk entitled participants to complimentary pizza and popcorn, but this year, because of the nature of the space, tickets were required for food. It hadn’t been communicated to us that tickets could be used for a free hot dog from Fat Franks (we only stumbled upon this after deciding that we would buy food ourselves), and I’m sure many participants who hadn’t wanted to eat prior to the walk weren’t aware of this fact.

Nitpicks aside, it was still a great event. Nick Lees, the “Mile High Marshall” and Sophie led the way on a float of sorts down the walk route. There’s something about just being a part of a crowd, knowing you are a part of a movement larger than yourself that is wonderful to experience.

Nick Lees and Sophie

And we’re off!

Mack gets his walk on

Along the walk route

At the Legislature

Instead of stopping halfway through the walk at the Legislature for a photo, the organizers decided the group shot would be taken at the end back at Churchill Square. The stairs on the Centennial Plaza were the perfect place to do so.

Group photo op

Thanks again to everyone who supported us!

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