Team Booberang Walks Again
Point Pleasant Beach was a sea of pink on Sunday as nearly 20,000 people flocked to the town to walk for family, friends, co-workers and the hope that one day breast cancer will be a thing of the past.
The annual Making Strides walk generated about $1.3 million for the American Cancer Society but it’s much more than just another fundraiser. It’s a way for people of all ages and all walks of life to unite even if their motivation and reasoning for strolling over 3 miles on an October Sunday is different.
Some walk as a sign of support for someone battling breast cancer, others do so in memory of a loved one or friend lost to the dreaded disease and there are those who walk to salute a survivor. Nearly 800 teams registered, often with colorful nicknames and attire and no matter what their story the mood is always upbeat.
Among those groups was “Team Booberang” which is organized by my wife Jane, a breast cancer survivor. They first walked in 2005 when the group was made up of about six of her friends from Manchester Township High School and over the years there’s been as many as 40. Sunday’s group included both our children, babies in strollers, grandmothers and even a dog and as usual the morning began with a mini tailgate in the Silver Lake parking lot at the corner of Arnold and Ocean avenues. Jane and I get one of the coveted prime spots in that lot because we arrive around 6am after picking up donated bagels from Rich at New York Bagels on Route 88 in Brick.
As day breaks and the sun appears we set up our table with juice, donuts and fruit as team members begin arriving including teacher and photographer Jill Ocone, who has taken pictures since the beginning. We were even led in a morning stretch organized by teacher Lisa Vecchione, who would serve as a motivational guru throughout the morning while taking videos and cruising the course at times on a skateboard.
After finishing the walk on what turned out to be a beautiful morning it was back to the car where Jane passed out subs to “Team Booberang” courtesy of Peter Cancro of Jersey Mike’s and delivered by her fellow guidance counselor Barry Sullivan. However for our family there was one more part left in what’s become a Making Strides tradition and that was a visit to Surf Taco where we gathered after negotiating plenty of local traffic.
Some good food to wrap up a day that featured plenty of good vibe for a good cause.