This is going to be a fast post, AKontheGO friends, because I don’t want Wish Kid Hannah to catch on to our idea. See, I spent yesterday with Hannah and her incredible family, and it became evident right away that this kid is one cool cat. Hannah has wanted to learn about mushing since she was small, going so far, her mother told me, to build her own sled out of an old pair of skis and hitching up a few family dogs. It’s her dream, but now it’s also her reality, for tomorrow she climbs into the basket of Ramey Smyth’s sled and takes an 11-mile ride with one of the nicest guys the sport has to offer. Iditarod does that for folks – allows dreams and wishes to become true.
Hannah, while rather quiet, lights up when someone mentions a new idea or subject of interest (dogs, airplanes, mechanical things). She also has a beautiful smile that shows humble courage during a lifelong illness, and I want to see more of that grin tomorrow.
So – here’s the plan. It’s easy, fun, and a great way to teach your own kids the value of community, hospitality, and compassion. Follow along as we give Hannah some Alaska love, via the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Alaska and Washington.
1. Make a sign or banner. “Go Hannah!” or “Alaska is proud of you, Hannah!” or something similar. Ramey Smyth is #38 out of the chute tomorrow, midway through the pack of 66 competing mushers.
2. Show up along the start line along 4th Avenue or the 11-mile stretch of trail between downtown and Campbell Airstrip. Good spots are Cordova Street, Chester Creek trail, Goose Lake Trail system, Alaska Native Medical Center/University Lake, and anywhere along the Campbell Tract/Campbell Creek Science Center/Airstrip trail. Wave signs, yell out encouragement, and thank Ramey Symth for taking Hannah on this journey.
3. Tell your friends. The more signs we have, the more awesome Alaska welcome we can share with Hannah and her family; mom, dad, and two sisters.
NOTES: The entire trip between downtown Anchorage and Campbell Airstrip takes about an hour for most teams. I’ll Tweet Hannah’s departure from the starting line so you’ll all be ready. Bring your cameras, too, and upload photos to our Facebook page. I know Hannah’s family would love to see the trailside love we’re offering!
Questions? Email AKontheGO at email@example.com, or send us a message via Facebook. We’ll be watching!