By: Holly Odgers
Despite a challenging year in which we could not hold our annual Lake Loop bike/run/paddle due to COVID-19, we still came together in spirit and online to celebrate a healthy lake and a healthy community with our first-ever Virtual Lake Loop Challenge.
The transition to a virtual event, held the first 11 days in October, would surely shake things up. Our goals, however, remained the same: bring the community together; celebrate Lake Hopatcong as a recreational resource, and; raise funds for the Lake Hopatcong Foundation's critical efforts to protect the lake environment and enhance the lake experience for this and future generations.
So, what exactly did we accomplish?
With 25 teams, 195 registered participants, and 250 donors, we got moving in all sorts of ways during all 11 days. Together, we racked up 2,054 hours of activity while raising $60,000! Yes, you read that right—2,054 hours of activity and $60,000 raised. Wow!
Organizing a virtual event sounds simple, right?
Well, not so fast. In many ways, some unforeseen, a virtual event is even more complex and demanding than the real thing.
With a team of dedicated people and enthusiastic participants, however, we made it all happen. So, we want to thank everyone who played a part in making our premiere Virtual Lake Loop Challenge a winner!
So, thank you!
We're deeply grateful to the members of our Lake Loop committee, who remained focused on their destination despite having to navigate some very difficult routes to get there. Committee members included: Co-chairs Sharon Gruber and Jess Beckerman, Lauren Rossi, Caitlin Doran, Holly Odgers, Roberta Schmidt, and Lisa Palanchi. It was a creative and hard-working crew, and we thank each and every one of them for their dedication!
We would also like to thank the team from Medalist Sports for providing insight and support throughout the entire process.
Our sincere appreciation also goes to those who created videos and to all the volunteers who spread the word by hanging posters, installing banners, and more.
Naturally, we'd like to thank all of our go-with-the-flow Lake Loopers who participated and raised funds. And, of course, none of our success would have been possible without our generous sponsors, supporters, and partners, along with everyone who made monetary contributions to the cause.
Whew! That's a lot of thank-yous.
We're thrilled so many chose to take this unprecedented virtual journey with us, and our hats are off to each of you, as well as to everyone who remains committed to a healthy lake and a healthy community.
Maybe the best way to wrap things up is to take a look back at the Virtual Lake Loop Challenge through the eyes, the photos, and the smiles of our 2020 Lake Loopers.
So, enjoy this slideshow, and we hope to see you again, in person or online, next year!
Thanks, from the bottom of our hearts.