Students, teachers run Hot Chocolate race, support charities

by Frida Valdés, Feature Editor

After Maribel Aguilar, senior, missed the deadline to sign up for a 5K run, she decided to register for a 15K run; she thought she would become tired and would not finish the race. However, as she ran the first five kilometers with Kathy Burke, wife of Michael Burke, English teacher, she felt encouraged to keep on going.

“I’m running with Mrs. Burke, and she’s like, ‘Well, you look pretty good, are you sure you don’t want to just keep going to the 15K?” Aguilar said.

“I don’t know, the most I’ve ever ran in my life was four miles…I didn’t know if I could do 9.2 miles, and she said, ‘I think you can do it.’”

On Nov. 4, Aguilar, Donna Bledsoe, senior,  Mr. Burke, Cynthia Carro, English teacher, and  Alan Wahlert, social science division head, ran the Hot Chocolate 15K/5K run which took place in Chicago. The race began around 7 a.m. from Grant Park to Soldier Field, Chicago.

Although Aguilar, and Bledsoe, did not run with someone in particular, they both felt encouraged by other participants.

“The more people I saw, the more pumped I’d be because I was nervous about running it, but then I’m like, ‘Okay there’s so many people, and there’s people even walking,’” Bledsoe said.

“I had nothing to worry about, so I was just motivated by seeing everyone there,” Bledsoe said.

Aguilar kept pace with other runners, which helped her finish the race.

“You could always find someone to keep pace with; you’re never going be on your own because there’s literally like ten thousand people all around you. It’s just awesome, and they have little entertainers, and they have music, and there’s people on the side cheering you on,” Aguilar said.

Bledsoe ran the Turkey Trot race, which took place on Thanksgiving last year at Highland Park.

Running the Hot Chocolate run motivated Bledsoe to get involved in other races

“It is motivating me to do more, bigger races; I want to do the marathon one day,” Bledsoe said.

Multiple charities, such as Ronald McDonald House, teamed together for this race in order to raise money to improve children’s health, well-being and education.