Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

November 22, 2013

Social Eyes: Ride for the Kids is Saturday to benefit Tarrant Area Food Bank

The concept involves schoolchildren forming teams of bike riders raising funds from individual and group sponsors.

A brand new event will take the place of the Breakfast With the Stars fundraiser benefiting the Tarrant Area Food Bank. Supporters of the food bank say the time has come to start something new, and they have organized Ride for Kids — Gear Up to End Childhood Hunger.

The concept involves schoolchildren forming teams of bike riders raising funds from individual and group sponsors for a noncompetitive ride (or walk) of up to 5 miles led by Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, a cycling enthusiast. The ride is set for 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Stockyards Station, 130 E. Exchange Ave.

Chairwoman Kerry Miles said the host committee aims to enable kids to know “the joy of philanthropy” by helping other kids in need.

“Kids know it’s not OK for kids to go hungry, and they are gearing up to do something about it,” she said.

Studies released by Feeding America say that 1 in 4 children in Tarrant County lives in a household that doesn’t always have enough to eat.

The event, where adults and kids can ride a bike or a tricycle or take a stroll, sounds like a lot of fun. A Kids for Kids relay race around a quarter-mile course should rev up a lot of excitement among spectators cheering on their favorite team.

Lots of entertainment and some activities for the younger kiddos are planned, and at the awards ceremony the top fundraisers and teams will get new bicycles to donate to kids in schools served by the Tarrant Area Food Bank. Just imagine the learning experience the winners will have as they present the bikes in a private celebration at the schools.

Many of the 25 couples serving on the host committee have helped organize teams. Tyler and Brian Crumley helped Fort Worth Country Day students; Jennifer and Michael Aragon worked with Tanglewood Elementary kids; and Stacey and Matt Posey helped form teams from Aledo.

Those who can’t be in the ride can help by using the hashtag #GearUp4Kids on Twitter through Sunday. Watson Drill Rigs is donating $1 (up to $5,000) for each tweet or retweet.

To sign up, go to www.tafb.org and click on “Ride for Kids.” Youth rider fees are $20 through today and $25 the day of the ride. Adult rider registration is $30 today and $35 on Saturday. Adults who need a bike to join the family ride can call Becky Delaune at 817-332-9177 to reserve one.

Northeast Tarrant

A Morning with Neil Sperry

The Grapevine Garden Club invites everyone in the community to a special event at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Palace Theatre, 300 S. Main St. in downtown Grapevine, featuring horticulture celebrity Neil Sperry.

The club is raising money to build a greenhouse at the Grapevine Botanical Gardens at Heritage Park, 411 Ball St. The steering committee includes chairwoman Beckie Underwood with help from Pam Braak, Sarah Erickson, Linda Krimm, Elayne Vick, Joetta King, Debbie Smith, and Lisa Grove.

“Neil’s knowledge and experience have made him our region’s most trusted source of help, and we’re thrilled to be able to bring his expertise to area gardeners,” Underwood said.

Sperry, often referred to as the most familiar voice in Texas horticulture, will guide the audience through challenges in gardening in his talk, “Texas Home Landscaping — Planning and Plants.” Sperry will share photos of his garden along with notable gardens he has visited.

Club President Pam Braak said the event “will certainly put our Greenhouse Project fundraising on the map.”

Garden club officials say the total cost of building the greenhouse is expected to be about $150,000. The Grapevine Parks and Recreation Department will build the infrastructure and will maintain the building once it is built.

“We believe that a greenhouse will provide opportunities to expand the gardens’ educational classes and provide a laboratory for hands-on lessons in plant propagation, floriculture, transplanting, and soil preparation,” club spokeswoman King wrote.

Tickets are $15 and are available at Marshall Grain (Grapevine), Calloway’s Nursery (Hurst and Southlake) and tickets@grapevinegardenclub.com. Call 817-532-7343 with questions or visit www.grapevinegardenclub.org.

Grapevine Parade of Lights Dec. 5

Be transformed at the Parade of Lights in downtown Grapevine to a “Winter Holiday,” the theme of this year’s parade.

Join the hundreds of spectators who will line the street at 7 p.m. for the enchanting lighted procession.

Awards will be presented for the best entries in several categories. Learn more at www.GrapevineChamber.org.

Arlington

Arlington winter run in 36th year

The Don Zetnick Arlington Winter Run hosted by Arlington YMCA is set for 8:30 a.m. Dec. 7 at the Maverick Activities Center at the University of Texas at Arlington.

The oldest race in Arlington (my son won his age category many years ago when he was about 10), the contest has featured cute little penguins as the iconic image for the event. Each year special penguin trophies are offered. I have a lovely collection of the penguins in my Star-Telegram office that the newspaper received because of our long sponsorship of the run.

“We have people who save and collect these year after year,” YMCA spokeswoman Pam Webb said. “This year, the penguins are from a collectable line — the Aurora Line. The company just came out with a new realistic stuffed baby penguin.”

The race is named in honor of Arlington runner and retailer Don Zetnick, and organizers are proud to continue an event honoring a man so significant to the running scene.

“I’m very happy to be able to continue this Arlington tradition that my father started 36 years ago,” said son Phil Zetnick, who owns the Runer store. “It is great to see so many people come together for the run and support this event that helps support one of our local charities, the YMCA of Arlington.”

Don Zetnick was named to the Texas Distance Runners Hall of Fame this year. His tradition of starting the race with “Runners, start your engines” followed by the blast of an air horn is fondly remembered by veterans of the race.

The event offers three races: a 1-mile Penguin Waddle for ages 11 and under, and 2-mile and 10K races that are certified by USA Track and Field. The event attracts school and business teams along with families and friends who form their own.

A rare category for age 80 and older has attracted many of Zetnick’s friends in past years including Gene Brock; Richard Weidener, 85; Richard Lenz, 84; Paul and Nancy Raitz, (Nancy’s 84); and Zetnick’s widow, Sally Zetnick, 81.

Other hardworking committee members are Larisa Peterson, manager of the Runner; and Jeph Abara, race director; and from the Y, Colleen Overton, James Hollis, Peter Herta, Kay Nash, Courtney Wood, Jerry Mechell, Dana Davis and Paul Wilhide.

Registration costs $20 before Nov. 30, $25 from Dec. 1 to 6, and $30 the day of the race. Team pricing is $14 a person for school teams and $18 a person for other teams.

Register at: www.DonZetnickArlingtonWinterRun.com.

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