Last night a bunch of local triathletes hosted the end-of-season banquet. Once a year we get to see everyone with combed hair, and even smelling nice. Our guest speaker was the one and only Olympic triathlete Hunter Kemper. Here he is below, flanked by Jeremy Baker (one of my FCA teammates) and me.
He regaled us with his Olympic and other race stories. Hunter is hilarious.
I would hang out with this guy in real life if he lived in my neighborhood.
He used this platform to talk about the charity he supports, A-T. It's a genetic and fatal disease which afflicts only about 500 children in the U.S. each year. The disease causes progressive loss of muscle control, immune system problems and a strikingly hight rate of cancer. He met two little girls, sisters, who both have it and they really touched his heart. They will die in their teens, unless a cure is found.
He is also a Christian (and even told the crowd that he could feel the hand of Christ on him as he raced in Beijing this summer)! I thought it was really cool that Hunter openly embraces his faith, especially since anti-Christian sentiments are what's popular, and especially harsh in the last few months. Anyway, you can read more about A-T at www.atcp.org. Help if you feel driven, as most of us did last night.
Jeremy is opening a new bike shop in Chaska, MN in January. Actually, he is taking over an existing shop, Get Your Gear, but will be changing it up a lot... it will now also offer a great assortment of super fun women's running and tri clothes. So Laura and I decided to wear some of it last night. I am in a SkirtSports running dress, with tri shorts underneath, and bolero-style arm-warmers with matching headband from Sheila Moon. Laura is in arm-warmers and headband. The fabrics are soft and wicking, they fit true to size, and they are nothing short of seriously hawt. I mean, c'mon. Just look at us. ;-)
There was also a blogger reunion of sorts: Taconite Boy, Trimama, me, Andy Mork (serious cyclist and cross-country skier), Kate Monster, and Mark Evenson. As usual Mark is hamming it up. Back in the old days we used to run "throwaway" races together, but now he's really fast, so we can't run together anymore. I mean he's really, really fast -- he even has his last name printed on the butt of his Fastskins. But I still remember when he used to stop for group pictures during races. Maybe I can dig one up and post it... te-he. Kate is also an amazing athlete by day, and they are the cutest couple EVER.
Speaking of super fast, Jen Lenarz was also there. I love this girl - like other local speedsters, (how did I not get a picture with you Jules???), like our own "Just-back-from-Kona-Cathy",
...Jen always smiles, waves and cheers for you, when she spots you on the course.
I love Minnesota. It may be cold out, but the people are so nice and fun. I love you guys!!