Friends of Aine, a nonprofit organization providing bereavement support services to grieving children, teens, and families, held its 11th Annual Kids’ Try-athlon on Sunday, August 13 at the Bedford Town Pool and High School.
250 children of all athletic abilities participated in the swimming, biking, and running event.
Children ages four through ten swam 25 yards, biked one mile, and ran a half mile. Children ages eleven through fifteen swam 50 yards, biked two miles, and ran one mile. Participants and spectators enjoyed grilled cheese after the race, prepared by the Friends of Aine’s Board of Directors. Following the race, children and families had fun with various crafts, outdoor activities and entertainment including live music and dancing, a hula-hoop contest, and glitter tattoos. Children and adults were also encouraged to contribute to the “Grief-itti Memory Mural,” sponsored by Elliot Health System. Aine’s childhood friend Kat Zimmerman emceed the event, while several community collaborators provided kid-friendly activities at their table during the post-race celebration. Photos throughout the event were taken by Headshots Photography. Continuing the Kids’ Try-athlon tradition, Bedford High School football players ran through the finish line with the final racer, while the Bedford High School cheer team encouraged racers throughout the event.
This year’s Try-athlon Champion sponsor was AutoFair Honda. Additional supporters included Elliot Health System, Bellwether Community Credit Union, Rothwangl Dental, Bedford Men’s Club, Cross Insurance, Metro Walls, Rise Private Wealth Management, and many other generous local businesses. Friends of Aine also received generous donations from Hannaford, Market Basket, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Freihofer’s Bakery. Millennium Running designed the racecourse and managed event timing.
“The Kid’s Try-athlon is an important part of our mission. It provides kids the opportunity to get outside, gain confidence in their athletic abilities, and support other children and families who are grieving,” said Christine Phillips, Friends of Aine Co-Founder. “It also honors the memory of our beloved Aine, who enjoyed outside activities – especially swimming, biking, and running during the summer months.”