Here at Queensboro, we regularly contribute to worthy causes. Whether it be canned food donations for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina, or a donation to the Wounded Warrior Project, Fred and the Queensboro team are known for donating their time and talent to make the world a better place.
The Run for Ray Trail Run in Leland, NC was no exception.
Run for Ray, a fundraiser for the Ray Underhill Foundation, was started in 2009 to honor the late Ray Underhill. Underhill, a professional skateboarder and family man, lost a two year battle to a Chordoma brain tumor in 2008.
Since, his friends, family and skateboarding community gather every year to honor him and raise awareness for the Chordoma Cancer Foundation.
The Run for Ray, held at the Brunswick County Nature Park in Leland, NC, invited participants to run in a 3, 9 or 18 mile course. Runners donated in exchange for the opportunity to race, with awards for the top 3 male/female for each distance.
“We’ve really enjoyed working with John and the entire Run For Ray team. It’s a wonderful cause that our staff members were really excited to participate in,” said Fred. “Any time we are able to reach out to the community and help make events like Run for Ray a success, I can’t help but be proud of the work we do here at Queensboro.”
Queensboro joined reputable sponsors such as Clif Energy Bars, Bike Cycles, and Go Time to support the cause. In addition to donating screen-printed t-shirts and custom hats, we also “donated” some of our team members. Mattias MacDowell, Sarah Newton, and Melissa Weidenborner volunteered at the event.
“It was great to see so many volunteers, runners, and sponsors support such a great charity despite the cold and wet weather,” commented Mattias, who was taking photos. ”I feel proud to be a part of such a great community of givers and thankful many of them are my co-workers.”
No exaggeration on the cold weather. Runners and volunteers dealt with brisk temperatures, heavy and light showers, and a lot of muddy trails. Still, in spite of the less than ideal conditions, participants put on brave faces.
“I feel lucky to have been part of such an amazing event,” said Sarah from Merchandising, who distributed water to runners. ”Even through the cold and rain, the love, support and appreciation was overwhelming and contagious. Definitely an event I will continue to support in the future.”
“It was really cool to follow this donation order from the sample process all the way to the event itself,” she added. ” When I told John I was from Queensboro, he couldn’t say enough good things about our operation, our support and our product. Great job to all involved!”
The Queensboro team members who participated in the run, Bob Jones, Mike Kelsey and Kyle Page, also had wonderful things to say about the run, despite the cold weather and sore muscles.
“Great to see so many people out supporting a good cause in less than favorable conditions. I’m glad I was pushed to participate,” said Kyle, a logo specialist, who ran the 3 mile course. ”It was a fantastic event with lots of support from everyone involved. Great to see our own co-workers out there braving the elements in both support and running.”
“My legs are still a bit sore,” he confessed.
“I’m typically a fair weather runner but this was for a great cause and more fun than I expected!” said Bob of QB Online Stores, who ran the 9 mile course.
“The course was exciting with great scenery even in the rain and amazing trails. I can’t wait to go back to Brunswick Nature Park in the future. I give credit to ALL the event volunteers who were standing in the rain cheering us on!”
Mike Kelsey from the IT Department, finished the 9 mile course with a time of 1:18. Although he “signed up just to run”, he confessed that when he learned more about Ray Underhill and Chordoma, it ”changed the race” for him.
“Right before the race, his wife got up and gave us a heartfelt thanks, and a fellow Chordoma patient, who’s currently beating the disease, took the mic and talked about exactly how the event has raised several million dollars, and, as he put it, is moving the needle on the problem. It was strange, and sort-of amazing, to think that a couple hundred people shivering in the rain in middle of the woods in February were playing a part in fixing brain cancer.”
Queensboro staff members who attended the event, Kyle Foster and Amber Sheets, were impressed with the upbeat nature of the participants and volunteers.
“I was very impressed with the level of support, despite the weather.” said Amber, a member of our Customer Service team. “It was inspiring to see so many runners and volunteers at the event supporting a good cause.”
“Great show of support, in less than ideal conditions, too.” added Kyle from Merchandising, who attended the event with his family. ”Thanks to everyone who helped make this another great event and for helping the Underhill family and their efforts to help fight Chordoma.”